Friday, March 6, 2009

Rays at Pirates

The Rays make their first of three visits to McKechnie Field this season. And I'll send out a big "THANK YOU" to the Rays traveling Secretary Jeff Ziegler for giving me three games within an 11-mile drive of my Palmetto home.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Actually, McKechnie Field is worth the drive from anywhere, and there are a couple of hundred residents of western Pennsylvania who will back me up on that.

Carlos Pena makes his spring debut. He'll be at first base and will get two at-bats.

Carlos Hernandez, the one-time Houston prospect, starts today for the Rays. Joe Maddon said a few minutes ago that Hernandez has a shot at the No. 5 spot in the rotation or a spot in the bullpen, so I guess I need to add his name every time I write about the No. 5 spot or the bullpen.

Check out the lineups. Notice Shawn Riggans at DH? That's because Pat Burrell went back to San Francisco for his sister's wedding this weekend. Also, Maddon wants to give Riggans some more at-bats.

Here are the lineups:

Fernando Perez CF
Justin Ruggiano LF
Evan Longoria 3B
Carlos Pena 1B
Gabe Gross RF
Dioner Navarro C
Shawn Riggans DH
Elliot Johnson 2B
Reid Brignac SS
Carlos Hernandez P

Andrew McCutchen LF
Freddy Sanchez 2B
Nate McLouth CF
Ryan Doumit C
Adam LaRoche 1B
Craig Monroe RF
Brandon Moss DH
Neil Walker 3B
Jack Wilson SS
Jimmy Barthmaier P

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