03/10/12 7:10 PM ET
Brignac welcomes baby boy
By Bill Chastain / MLB.com
Manager Joe Maddon said that Brignac could be back with the team on Sunday.
Rays' walking wounded close to returning
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Evaluating the walking wounded is the camp pastime for the Rays at this stage of Spring Training.
Fortunately, none of the ailments nagging the players is too serious, and nearly all of the injured appear close to taking the field.
Evan Longoria (bruised right hand) took live batting practice on Saturday and felt good enough that manager Joe Maddon said that he will likely play in his first Spring Training game on Sunday, against the Pirates.
David Price, who had to cut short Thursday's outing because of a stiff neck, felt much better on Saturday, and looked better, too, as it was the first time he was not favoring his neck.
Normally, the left-hander throws a bullpen session on the second day after a start, but he has bumped that to Sunday. Though he doesn't expect to delay his next start, he likely won't know his status until tomorrow.
"He might get pushed back a day," Maddon said.
Luke Scott, recovering from surgery on his right shoulder, is physically ready to play, but his mechanics have been off. Listening to him on Thursday, he sounded as though the process of getting comfortable enough in the box to play would take a while. However, Maddon said that Scott's timing and feel at the plate have progressed greatly over the past two days, and he hinted that Scott could be in a game in the next day or two.
Sean Rodriguez (sprained left index finger) is still out with swelling and remains day to day. Rodriguez is in competition for the starting shortstop job, so he is eager to get back on the field.
Matt Moore (strained abdominal muscle) threw batting practice on Saturday, and Maddon said that he will likely pitch in a game on Tuesday.
Jake McGee said he feels fine after a freak accident in which he took a ball off his left elbow while leaning against the cage during batting practice. Sam Fuld also feels fine after playing in his first game on Friday; he had been delayed by a sore wrist.
Without winter ball, Peralta finds ways to prepare
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Success has its perks, which for many would include not having to participate in winter baseball. Joel Peralta, who had a nice season in 2011, wanted to do so, but the Rays asked him to sit out.
Had the Rays not expressed this desire, Peralta would have played in the Dominican Republic for the Gigantes.
"I was really, really bored this winter," Peralta said. "A lot of people asked me if I was going to pitch. One day I went to a ballgame, and the guy announced that I was at the game and they gave me a standing ovation. And that feels really good. And fans kept asking me if I was going to play or not, telling me that they need me."
Not playing winter baseball meant that Peralta had to find other ways to get ready for the 2012 season. So he took off October and November before getting to work in December with the goal of losing some weight.
"I lost 14 or 15 pounds," he said. "And I worked out trying to get my pitches right. Before I came over here, I started throwing a couple of bullpens and faced a couple of batters."
Peralta did not add any pitches to his repertoire.
"It's going to be the same me -- fastball, slider, split," he said before adding, "And a quick pitch."
The wily Peralta used a quick pitch on several occasions last season with great effectiveness.
Rays' non-roster invitees look to extend success
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Beginning with their first year of existence, the Rays have enjoyed success with non-roster invitees making the squad out of Spring Training.
Rolando Arrojo made the first team and went on to become an American League All-Star that season. Following are the other non-roster invitees who have made the team:
Dave Eiland and Herbert Perry, 2000; Ken Hill, 2001; Rocco Baldelli, Jim Parque and Steve Parris, 2003; Chris Singleton and Hideo Nomo, 2005; Jason Childers, Ruddy Lugo and Luis Ordaz, 2006; Gary Glover, Carlos Pena and Al Reyes, 2007; Eric Hinske, 2008; and Juan Cruz, 2011.
Of this year's group, catcher Chris Gimenez appears to be the most serious candidate.
When told of the team's history when it comes to non-roster invitees, Gimenez smiled: "I guess there's no other place I'd rather be."
Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.