Rays notes: After rainout, Price likely to face Boston on Monday
For the second time this season, the Rays had a game postponed at Fenway Park. The makeup game is set for Monday. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: July 26, 2013
Updated: July 26, 2013 at 06:45 AM
BOSTON - Thursday's rainout in Boston likely means the Red Sox will face LHP David Price twice in six days. The Rays pushed their rotation back a day for this weekend's series with the Yankees in New York. RHP Jeremy Hellickson, scheduled to start Thursday, will start tonight and be followed by RHP Chris Archer and LHP Matt Moore. "It doesn't change too much," Hellickson said. "It's a good lineup, a tough place to pitch. I haven't pitched there in a while. I'm looking forward to it." Hellickson will make his first start at Yankee Stadium since Sept. 21, 2011.
Manager Joe Maddon said after Thursday's game was postponed and rescheduled for 6:10 p.m. Monday that he hasn't decided whether Price or RHP Roberto Hernandez will start. But going with Price would keep him on his five-day schedule. And with the way he pitched Wednesday during his 5-1, complete-game victory, why wouldn't you give him another shot at the Red Sox? "It would be kind of interesting," Maddon said. The Red Sox are scheduled to pitch LHP Felix Doubront, who took the loss Wednesday opposite Price. Why Monday? Thursday's game was delayed about 30 minutes before it was postponed to Monday. The teams do have several common off days in August, but the Rays are coming back from the West Coast on one. While playing Monday extends this trip to 11 days, Maddon said it was the best of all options. "I would much rather under the circumstances do it, because we're already up in this neck of the woods. Let's get her done and then you put it in the pile and you don't have to worry about coming back and trying to slot it in later and all the confusion travel components it will cause," he said. When told one option could have been playing a doubleheader during the September series between these teams at Tropicana Field and allowing the Red Sox to be the home team, as the Reds and Giants did this week, Maddon said, "That's fine. We would have happily given them the game receipts." Good call Though the Fenway Park gates opened on time Thursday and an announcement that the start would be delayed by rain wasn't made until about 20 minutes before the scheduled first pitch, there was a feeling among the Rays that the game would be rained out. Hellickson did not begin his pregame routine. Maddon said he was glad umpire crew chief Brian Gorman did not allow the game to begin even though a light rain was falling when the decision was made to postpone it. "The umpires did the right thing," Maddon said. "I got to give Brian a lot of credit. It was all about playing nine innings. It should be about playing nine innings. It should never be about starting the game and hoping to get in five. That should never be the way it's viewed. "I really appreciate that they did it that way, and I commend them on it." The Rays had two instances this year when that did not happen. The May 2 game against the Royals in Kansas City began in the rain and continued until play was halted in the middle of the fourth. The rain was heavier by then and it turned to snow before the game was postponed. The May 31 game in Cleveland began nearly two hours late because of rain and was eventually finished despite three rain delays totaling almost five hours. In that game, Moore pitched the first inning but did not return. He was 8-0 at the time, then went on a three-game losing streak, a slide that was attributed to his short outing that night. "He was all messed up for a few starts," Hellickson said. Complete efforts at Fenway Park Moore and Price became the first teammates to throw complete games against the Red Sox in the same series at Fenway Park since Darren Oliver and Bobby Witt of the Rangers in 1997. Moore and Price are the first left-handed teammates to turn that trick since Vida Blue and Darold Knowles of the A's in 1973. The last four nine-inning complete-game victories by opposing pitchers at Fenway Park belong to Rays pitchers: Price, who also threw one last season, Moore and Jeff Niemann (2011). Noteworthy Hellickson left 35 tickets to Thursday's game for family and friends, half of whom he said made the ride from Des Moines, Iowa. "I told them I was probably pitching (tonight) if they want to drive down. I told them I'd give them tickets there, too." . Price's ERA at Fenway is 1.96, the lowest by an opponent since Lefty Grove of the Philadelphia A's posted a 1.66 ERA from 1926-33. Roger Mooney