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Tampa Bay Rays Roster Report 2009-04-09


Tampa Bay Rays Roster Report 2009-04-09
The Rays went into spring training figuring most of their team was set and there would only be a few decisions to be made, and that turned out to be the case. The camp was relatively uneventful, with OF Fernando Perez, who was ticketed for Class AAA Durham, the only spring casualty. Otherwise, the Rays went into the season pretty much as they expected. Their lineup is better, and their rotation, bullpen and defense are at least as good as they were last year.

PLAYER NEWS:

--CF B.J. Upton is scheduled to be in the starting lineup for the Class A Charlotte Stone Crabs' inaugural game Thursday night in Port Charlotte, Fla., the first of three rehab appearances before his expected return to the Rays on Monday.

--C Shawn Riggans is expected to start Thursday's matinee in place of Dioner Navarro.

--INF Willy Aybar will get his first 2009 action as the DH Thursday, with Pat Burrell getting the day game after the night game off.

--RHP Matt Garza is excited to get his season going Thursday and could be on the verge of big things, manager Joe Maddon said. "I believe he understands now how good he can be, and he wants to be that guy," Maddon said. "He wants to be that dominant pitcher."

MEDICAL WATCH:

RHP Troy Percival (back surgery in December 2008) has made a spectacular recovery and is showing more athleticism and sharpness in his pitches than he did at any point last season.

CF B.J. Upton (left shoulder surgery in November 2008) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 27. He will begin a rehab assignment with Class A Charlotte (Port Charlotte, Fla.) on April 9, and he could rejoin the Rays on April 13.

RHP Chad Bradford (right elbow surgery in February 2009) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 27. He is making a good recovery and hopes to be back in late May or June.

OF Fernando Perez (dislocated left wrist) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 27. He is projected to miss four or five months because further exams showed ligament damage as part of the injury he suffered March 10. The Rays hope he will return in time to play regular-season games.

RHP Jason Isringhausen (right elbow surgery in September 2008) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 31. He might be able to return in May.

ROTATION:

1. RHP James Shields

2. LHP Scott Kazmir

3. RHP Matt Garza

4. RHP Andy Sonnanstine

5. RHP Jeff Niemann

BULLPEN:

RHP Troy Percival (closer)

RHP Dan Wheeler

RHP Grant Balfour

LHP J.P. Howell

LHP Brian Shouse

RHP Joe Nelson

RHP Lance Cormier

LINEUP:

1. 2B Akinori Iwamura

2. LF Carl Crawford

3. 3B Evan Longoria

4. 1B Carlos Pena

5. DH Pat Burrell

6. CF Matt Joyce

7. C Dioner Navarro

8. RF Gabe Gross/Gabe Kapler

9. SS Jason Bartlett

RESERVES:

C Shawn Riggans

INF Ben Zobrist

INF Willy Aybar

OF Gabe Kapler/Gabe Gross


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: April 9, 2009

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