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Rays continue to get in game shape with Grapefruit League action beginning Friday

Photo by Ryan Adams I The Scrum Sports

With the Phillies coming to Port Charlotte on Friday the Rays are just about “game ready.”

“We’re ready for games,” manager Kevin Cash said right from the start of his meeting with the media today.

So are we, Skipper.

Today, with a “light day” scheduled for tomorrow, plenty of bright spots littered the multiple fields at Charlotte Sports Park for the third full day of workouts. The day was packed with base-running, live batting practice, and some bullpen sessions that impressed the coaching staff as well as Cash.

“Starting to see hitters a little more timed up after a couple days of doing this.”

One particular bright spot that had Cash all smiles was the play of new OF Guillermo Heredia.

“He looked awesome, that was the bright spot,” Cash said of Heredia. “Watching him run down balls like that, you get spoiled watching KK do it all the time but watching Heredia do it out there, he glides out there. That was fun.”

Pagan hoping to become more valuable in camp

New relief pitcher Emilio Pagan is trying to expand his arsenal in time for Opening Day. The 27-year old righty is working on a third and possibly fourth pitch to help his case this spring.

“For me, I thought the curveball had good action on it,” Pagan said. “That’s been a point of emphasis all off-season. Changeup wasn’t so good. Wendle smoked it into the gap today. Overall I thought today was a pretty good day.”

Pagan went 3-1 with a 4.35 ERA with Oakland in 2018. He came to the Rays in the three-team trade between the A’s and Rangers that sent INF Jurickson Profar to Oakland in December.

Yandy having fun with his new team

“He’s enjoying himself,” Cash said of his new infielder and potential starting first baseman. “You wanna do everything to make the guy comfortable. Willy (Adames) has done a really nice job embracing him.”

Yandy Diaz is among a short list of candidates to get plenty of looks this spring at first base. He joins Ji-Man Choi and Brandon Lowe as the likely trio to get the most reps.


Opening Day 2019 is just 36 short days away…

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