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Tuesday, May 22, 2018
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Tampa Bay Rays

20 things you might not know about the Rays

1 Since 2008, the Rays have won six BBWAA awards, the most in the majors: Joe Maddon AL Manager of the Year in 2008 and 2011; David Price 2012 AL Cy Young Award;, Evan Longoria 2008 Rookie of the Year, Jeremy Hellickson 2011 Rookie of the Year, and Wil Myers 2013 Rookie of the Year.

2 The Rays begin the season with the same infield from the previous year for only the second time in team history. The first was 1998-99 – 1B Fred McGriff, 2B Miguel Cairo, SS Kevin Stocker and 3B Wade Boggs.

3 The Rays have as many 90-win seasons (five) as the Chicago Cubs have had since they last went to the World Series in 1945.

4 The last third baseman to start on Opening Day before Evan Longoria was on the scene … Willy Aybar in 2008.

5 In 2013, Jeremy Hellickson averaged 25.6 seconds between pitches, making him the second-slowest pitcher in the majors. The slowest? David Price at 25.8 seconds.

6 According to ESPN’s Home Run Tracker, the average true distance of a home run last season in the AL was 395.3 feet.

7 Evan Longoria’s longest home run of 2013 traveled 448 feet to left-center field at the Trop on May 11. He hit it off San Diego’s Huston Street.

8 The longest home run hit last season by Wil Myers sailed 444 feet to left-center field at Target Field in Minneapolis. He hit it off Pedro Hernandez on Sept. 15.

9 The Rays were one of six AL teams last year to have at least 20 homers out of the DH spot. The Red Sox, powered by 28 homers from David Ortiz, led the majors with 32.

10 Grant Balfour was the first Australian pitcher ever to appear in an All-Star Game.

11 Chris Archer’s 3.22 ERA was the third-lowest in the last 20 years by an AL rookie making at least 20 starts. The others were Jeremy Hellickson (2.76 in 2011) and Yankees right-hander Orlando Hernandez (3.13 in 1998).

12 David DeJesus was one of six players last season to play for three or more teams — Cubs, Nationals, Rays.

13 Yunel Escobar’s .421 postseason average was the highest in team history and the second-highest last season in the majors by a player with at least 10 at-bats.

14 As a college sophomore, Logan Forsythe (Arkansas) had two hits off David Price (Vanderbilt) in a game.

15 Brandon Gomes allowed 14 earned runs in 2013 — 10 of which came in three road games: 3 on April 18 at Baltimore, 3 on April 30 at Kansas City and 4 on Sept. 2 at Anaheim.

16 Wil Myers (June 24, 2013 vs. Toronto), Joe Dillon (May 20, 2009 vs. Minnesota) and Terry Shumpert (March 31, 2003 vs. Boston) are the only Rays to homer in their first at-bat at the Trop.

17 Brandon Guyer (May 6, 2011 at Baltimore) and pitcher Esteban Yan (June 4, 2000 at New York Mets) are the only Rays to homer during their first career at-bats.

18 Ryan Hanigan is one of five active catchers to catch two no-hitters — Homer Bailey vs. San Francisco on July 2, 2013 and Bailey at Pittsburgh in Sept. 28, 2012. The other four: A.J. Pierzynski, Carlos Ruiz, Miguel Olivo, Buster Posey.

19 The Rays were 63-31 last season when Desmond Jennings got at least one hit.

20 Matt Joyce walked a career-high 59 times in 2013, averaging a walk every 8.1 plate appearances, the best walk-to-plate appearance ratio on the team.

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