6/11/2013 8:15 P.M. ET
Rays maintain stance on Lackey incident
By Bill Chastain / MLB.com
ST. PETERSBURG -- Both benches cleared on Monday night after Red Sox starter John Lackey hit right fielder Matt Joyce in the shoulder blade with a 90-mph fastball. Lackey said he was simply "trying to come in there and get him off the plate a little bit."
Tampa Bay, suffice it to say, did not agree.
With two outs and nobody on in the bottom of the sixth, Lackey's 0-1 fastball hit Joyce. Joyce immediately flipped his bat, turned around and began pointing at and talking to Lackey, leaving no doubt he believed the plunking was intentional. Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia got in front of Joyce as they moved down the first-base line, resulting in a minor shoving match that prompted both dugouts to empty onto the field.
No punches were thrown, and no one was ejected, but there was a bit of pushing and shoving from both sides. After the dust settled, home-plate umpire Tom Hallion issued warnings to both dugouts.
Following the game, Joyce called Lackey's action a "bush league move," and manager Joe Maddon said there is no question in his mind that Lackey intentionally hit Joyce.
Joyce was asked on Tuesday if he is surprised that the incident did not escalate.
"You never know what's going to happen when benches clear," Joyce said. "Obviously, we don't have the best history with the Red Sox. I don't think anybody is trying to pick a fight or looking for that. But like I said, emotions get involved when you're playing teams from the same division and you really want to win games. Your emotions do get involved.
Joyce added that he thinks Saltalamacchia's actions were unusual as well.
"Yeah, I was a little surprised by Salty getting pretty aggressive," he said. "Most of the time, the catcher is like, 'Calm down, calm down, take your base.'"
Instead, Joyce said, Saltalamacchia swore at him.
"For him to sit there and cuss at me … I thought that was pretty aggressive," he said. "I didn't appreciate that too much."
Maddon told reporters on Tuesday that he stands by what he said after the game.
"I don't really want to go any further than that," he said. "I totally believe it was intentional. I saw the replay, and that validated my thoughts. But on their side of things, to admit that they did it on purpose would result in some kind of punitive situation, so I understand why they said what they said."
Maddon does not think the incident will lead to more trouble.
"I mean, I have not even talked to our guys about it," he said. "Listen, I want you to understand one thing. That group of Red Sox, that team of Red Sox players, I have so much respect for that group. … And I was just talking about that one guy last night."
Ironically, Maddon and that "one guy," Lackey, have been friends since their days with the Angels.
"I still consider him a friend," he said. "You don't just toss a friendship away over a moment like that. I'd be very happy to talk to Johnny. But I had to say what I said last night because I thought it was true."
Rays place Cobb on bereavement list, recall Odorizzi
ST. PETERSBURG -- The Rays have placed right-hander Alex Cobb on the bereavement list following the passing of his grandmother. To fill Cobb's place on the roster, the Rays have recalled right-hander Jake Odorizzi.
Cobb, who started on Monday night against the Red Sox, is expected to be away for three days, and he will make his start against the Royals on Saturday night.
Odorizzi is winless in two starts this season and four over his Major League career (two with Kansas City). He was 5-1 with a 3.90 ERA in 10 starts for Triple-A Durham.
Odorizzi, who has never pitched out of the bullpen in the Majors, is expected to add some depth to the relief corps after the group was somewhat depleted after Monday night's 14-inning loss to the Red Sox.
Odorizzi had originally been scheduled to start for the Bulls on Tuesday night.
"I'm fresh, I threw 100 pitches last time out, so I'm good to go for a lot of innings if need be," Odorizzi said.
Odorizzi would have liked to have attacked the hitters more during his previous two starts.
"Everything else I thought was all right," he said, "but that's what you have to do at any level."
'Tribute for Heroes' finalists announced
ST. PETERSBURG -- Major League Baseball and PEOPLE magazine announced 90 finalists on Tuesday for the "Tribute for Heroes" campaign, a national initiative that recognizes veterans and military service members and builds upon both the commitment of MLB and the magazine to honoring heroes from the U.S. Fans are encouraged to visit TributeForHeroes.com through June 30 to view the full list of finalists and to vote on their favorite stories.
One winner from each of the 30 teams will be included in All-Star Week festivities and recognized during the pregame ceremony leading up to the 2013 All-Star Game, being held at Citi Field on July 16 on FOX. The overall winner will be featured in the July 22 issue of PEOPLE, which hits newsstands on July 12.
Nominees to represent the Rays are Brad Snyder and Nancy Auclair, U.S. Navy; and Laura Sellinger, U.S. Air Force.
• David Price (left triceps) felt so good during his bullpen session on Monday that he will throw a simulated game on Thursday. The reigning American League Cy Young Award winner will likely make three rehab starts before returning to the team.
• Had Monday night's game moved into the 15th inning, Ryan Roberts would have pitched. The infielder could be seen warming up in the bullpen in the bottom of the 14th inning. Roberts said that the last time he pitched in a game was during Select League, and he never pitched in high school.
"If I had got into the game, I might have been a little crazy," Roberts said. "It's like, anticipation, anticipation, now I'm here in the big leagues."
• Many figured that right-hander Kyle Farnsworth was injured after he left Monday night's game and Cesar Ramos was allowed extra warmup pitches, but Maddon said that Farnsworth seemed to be doing well on Tuesday.
• The Rays have signed right-hander Roel Ramirez, their eighth-round selection out of United South (Texas) High School. He will join the Gulf Coast League Rays.
Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.