5/22/2013 1:20 A.M. ET
Maddon backtracks on celebration critique
By Bill Chastain / MLB.com
TORONTO -- After Monday's game, Joe Maddon remarked that he planned to talk to shortstop Yunel Escobar about the way Escobar gave a safe signal when he crossed home after hitting a two-run homer.
Maddon concluded his remarks on the subject by noting, "I'm certain you're not going to see that again."
Maddon did talk to Escobar on Tuesday, but he did not tell him to stop making the safe sign after hitting a home run.
"I did not say that, because he said he does do that quite often after a home run," Maddon said. "Some people point to the sky; he shows a safe sign. Again, that's just one of those things where people, their perceptions, they are going to interpret according to their own prejudices or thoughts or judgmental opinions. For me, I love the way he is. I want him to remain the way he is. He did nothing wrong."
Maddon praised Escobar for the way he has played and for his animation, then he questioned why Toronto fans boo former players, like Escobar, who has been booed during the current series after playing three seasons in Toronto.
Escobar "is a wonderful teammate within our group," Maddon said. "Part of it is, you know every time it seems, a lot of times a good player comes back to Toronto, and he gets booed here. Even though they played here well in the past, and giving this hometown a really good effort. Regardless of that, I've been around some players with the Rays in the past who have been booed, and I don't quite understand that sometimes."
Maddon did not mention the fact that Escobar's lasting legacy in Toronto remained wearing an anti-gay message on his eye black last season, which resulted in a suspension.
Joyce leaves game with hamstring tightness
TORONTO -- Matt Joyce left Tuesday night's game with the Blue Jays because of right hamstring tightness.
Joyce started in right field and left the game after playing the field in the sixth. Ryan Roberts took Joyce's spot in the order and took over at second base. Ben Zobrist moved from second base to right field.
The Rays are calling the move precautionary.
"He's fine," manager Joe Maddon said after the game. "He's a little tight in the right hammy. He just came up later, a team-type of situation, where he said, 'I can't cover.' I don't anticipate anything bad with that, but we had to get him out."
Even before the injury, Joyce was not scheduled to start Wednesday against Blue Jays left-hander Mark Buehrle.
Wright's heart with tornado-ravaged Moore
TORONTO -- On Monday, the Oklahoma City suburb of Moore was devastated by a mile-wide tornado that left a path of destruction, with dozens reported killed.
Jamey Wright's heart was with Moore on Tuesday, as the Rays reliever hails from Oklahoma City, where his parents and sister live near Moore in South Oklahoma City.
"We're not too far off," Wright said. "My sister just moved, two or three years ago, and the home that they did live in, I know it was demolished."
Fortunately, Wright's family survived Monday's disaster, as they did when a similar tornado ripped through the same area in 1999.
"All the weather calculations looked like something was going to happen that [Monday]," Wright said. "I don't think they had as much time as they did in the [tornado] that hit in '99. My dad said that came through pretty quick. That came pretty fast.
"Sixteen minutes for anybody who went through it in '99 -- that might as well be two hours. You don't sit around and think about what to do. You know what to do: you get in your car and leave the area, or you get underground or you don't make it. It's just awful, awful, awful."
Wright got a call from his wife, Marnie, right after Monday afternoon's game against the Blue Jays. Both are from the same area and attended the same high school.
"She was balling because she was on the phone with her parents, and they were in the car running from it," Wright said. "And she was talking to them, and the phone went dead. You know, that's a bad feeling.
"I told her I'd call back. I called my dad. He said it was just a little bit south of them, and they were all fine. They were having a tough time getting me up here in Canada."
Wright detailed the plan of action followed by his family.
"My parents [have a shelter], the next-door neighbors have one, my sister has one," Wright said. "So my dad was out at my sister's, and my mom was next door. My dad had come home from work, and he went straight to my sister's house. So they missed my parents and my wife's parents by two or three miles, almost the same path that it did in '99. Unfortunately, now there is just so much more in that area, so the destruction will be two or three times worse than it was in '99."
Wright noted that he reached out to his former Dodgers teammate, friend and Oklahoma native, Matt Kemp.
"I think his mother's house is gone," Wright said. "She lived in that area. I called to check on them. Said everybody was safe, but everything's gone."
Wright noted that as tragic a day as Monday was in the Oklahoma City area, the residents of the area were resilient and tough.
"I'm proud to say my home people where I grew up, they are the kindest and most generous people on the planet," Wright said. "So they'll be fine. They'll get through it. It will be hard, but they've been through it before."
Maddon admits error but wants rules revisited
TORONTO -- Rays manager Joe Maddon allowed that he was wrong in his interpretation of the home run rules where reviews are concerned.
Maddon was talking, again, about the ball Matt Joyce hit Sunday in Baltimore that was first ruled a double and eventually reviewed and ruled a home run.
Prior to the reversal, Maddon went to the umpires asking them to review the ball regarding whether it was a home run, all the while maintaining that the worst that Joyce could end up with was a double and not a foul ball, because he did not believe doubles were reviewable, only home runs.
But after getting a clarification from Andrew Friedman, the Rays' executive vice president of baseball operations, Maddon said he was wrong, but he voiced a strong sentiment that the rule needed to be modified.
"I was wrong," Maddon said. "It seems that Pandora's box is open. For instance, let's go back to the almost perfect game with [Armando] Galarraga in Detroit a couple of years ago. What they should have done is just stated that they thought it was a home run, and it could have been reviewed and then changed. Once you say it was a home run, then everything else becomes wide open. So that's the part of me that's really inconsistent within this rule.
"You've opened Pandora's box. So at the point that you want a home run challenged, everything else is up for review. That to me makes no sense whatsoever. I was wrong, I guess that is within the fabric of the rules right now. But yesterday I could have said, 'let's review that play at second base; I thought it was a home run. I want it reviewed.' Come on. So you have to draw some lines somewhere."
Original Roberto Hernandez to represent Rays at Draft
TORONTO -- Roberto Hernandez, the former Rays relief pitcher -- not the current Rays starter -- will represent Tampa Bay at the 2013 First-Year Player Draft.
The 2013 First-Year Player Draft will take place June 6-8, beginning with the Draft preview show on MLB.com and MLB Network on Thursday, June 6, at 6 p.m. ET. Live Draft coverage from MLB Network's Studio 42 begins at 7 p.m., with the top 73 picks being streamed on MLB.com and broadcast on MLB Network. Rounds 3-10 will be streamed live on MLB.com on June 7, beginning with a preview show at 12:30 p.m., and Rounds 11-40 will be streamed live on MLB.com on June 8, starting at 1 p.m.
MLB.com's coverage includes Draft Central, the Top 100 Draft Prospects list and Draft Tracker, a live interactive application that includes a searchable database of Draft-eligible players. You can also keep up to date by following @MLBDraft on Twitter. And get into the Draft conversation by tagging your tweets with #mlbdraft.
Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.