Rays Spring Training Day 8: Alex Cobb

DAY EIGHT—Today’s full-squad workout featured live BP…among those who threw to hitters for the first time were RH Jamey Wright, RH Jeremy Hellickson, LH Jake McGee, RH Alex Cobb, LH Matt Moore, LH Cesar Ramos, RH Chris Archer and RH Jake Odorizzi…an estimated 550 fans came out to the Charlotte Sports Complex to catch a glimpse.

Manager Joe Maddon
On teaching the young players: “How do you incorporate that philosophically, how do you get them to engage actively? A big part of it is that we really try to get them to understand to not worry about making mistakes. I think fear is taught too much, we don’t teach fear.”

On whether having Kelly Johnson will help Yunel Escobar communicate: “Of course it does because that comfort zone is going to be there, and the fact that they’ve worked together. I also believe Kelly can help us with the other guys playing second base as well. They’re all professionals; they’re all going to figure it out. It’s kind of unique that you get second base and shortstop from a previous enemy, come over here and all of the sudden, they’re part of the group. Meeting Yunel and talking to Kelly, I think it’s going to be an easy transition coming over here.”

Right-handed pitcher Alex Cobb
On his first live BP session: “It went well. First session is kind of just like a bullpen for us. Sometimes the guys are tracking, sometimes they’re swinging, but for us, mostly, we’re just trying to locate that fastball, first and foremost, and then try to get some feel for the other pitches. Hopefully they’re there. Usually the off-speeds are the last to come, but as long as you have good fastball location, which I did today, you can walk away feeling pretty good about it.”

On the group of players this spring: “It’s an unbelievable amount of talent. I’ve gotten to see the pitchers most of all, so every field you look at guys are throwing the heck out of the ball and have great off-speed stuff. It’s one of the most talented camps I’ve seen so far, on that aspect of things.”

On having a spot in the rotation: “It’s nice. It gives me a chance to work on things I need to work on. I’m not trying to get out there and show off all my stuff right away. I’m trying to do the little things that are going to help me throughout the course of the year. It’s not like I’m in stone in that position, either, there’s plenty of good arms all over the place. I still have to take care of my business; if I don’t, then I’ll be removed pretty quickly, but it is a little bit of a weight off to go out there and know that you have a potential spot and it’s in your hands to keep that spot.”

Source: Tampa Bay Rays Media