Cesar Ramos & Solid Defense Lead Rays To 5-4 Victory
Cesar Ramos was a late and somewhat surprising entrant into the competition to take the rotation spot resulting from Jeremy Hellickson‘s elbow injury.
The lefty reliever is in competition with Jake Odorizzi and Erik Bedard. There is language in Erik Bedard‘s contract that allows him to opt-out if he has not been named to the team roster by March 23rd.
With both Ramos and Odorizzi pitching tonight and Bedard tomorrow the fifth starter will be named on Saturday. In his last chance to prove his case to be the teams starting pitcher Ramos took to the mound and efficiently cut through the Twins lineup working 4.2 scoreless innings on just four hits striking out six and walking one. After the game Joe Maddon said that it “was the best he’s ever seen Ramos pitch. Good command. Good composure.”
After Grant Balfour came in to the game to record the final out of the fifth inning it was time for Jake Odorizzi to make his case for the job. Unfortunately he wasn’t as sharp as Ramos and gave up four runs (three earned) on six hits in his 4-innings of work. After the game he didn’t feel that the outing hurt him saying he felt that he didn’t do anything wrong and will be disappointed if not picked.
Team ER: off Minnesota 5, off Tampa Bay 3. BB: off Diamond 3 (Hanigan, Jennings, D, Loney), off Ramos, C (Willingham), Odorizzi (Florimon). SO: by Diamond (Jennings, D), Pressly 3 (Escobar, Y, Hanigan, Guyer), Hoffman (Argo), by Ramos, C 6 (Suzuki, K, Willingham, Arcia, O, Mauer, Plouffe, Arcia, O), Balfour (Dozier), Odorizzi 3 (Mauer, Kubel, Escobar, E). Umpires: HP: Toby Basner. 1B: Mark Ripperger. 2B: A.J. Johnson. 3B: Shaun Lampe. Official Scorer: Carli Todd. Weather: 75 degrees, clear. Wind: 2 mph, In from LF. T: 2:55. Att: 4,679. Venue: Charlotte Sports Park. March 20, 2014
Compiled by MLB Advanced Media; Copyright by MLB Office of the Commissioner
After losing Jeff Beliveau for the year with a torn labrum and then C.J. Riefenhauser landed on the disabled list with a stiff shoulder the Tampa Bay Rays were in need of a left-handed reliever and to fill that need they