Description: Rays right fielder Wil Myers (stress fracture in his right wrist) hit off a tee Friday and is progressing toward a mid-August return, barring any setbacks.
Insight: Myers suffered the injury on May 30 when he collided with Desmond Jennings. The 23-year-old reigning AL Rookie of the Year has been done little this season batting .227 with five homers and 25 RBI.
Description: Tampa Bay starter Jake Odorizzi won his third straight start Monday against the Brewers.
Insight: Odorizzi was dominant, walking none, striking out five and allowing one run on three hits in seven innings. The right-hander has been terrific in his last 15 starts, going 6-5 with a 2.83 ERA, a 1.12 WHIP and a 102/28 K/BB in 86 innings.
Description: In what may have been his final start with the Rays, David Price struck out 10, walked none and allowed three runs over eight innings against the Red Sox.
Insight: Price has won six straight starts and pitched to a 1.88 ERA and a 99/13 K/BB in his last 11. In that span, he's thrown at least seven innings in all 11 starts and averaged nearly eight innings per outing. The Rays have won eight straight and are now 50-53, so they may just decide to keep Price.
Description: Tampa Bay second baseman Ben Zobrist bounced back from a 0-for-12 stretch with four hits in four at-bats Friday night against the Red Sox.
Insight: Since June 25, Zobrist has gone 31-for-94 (.330) with six doubles, two triples, two homers, 13 RBI and 14 runs in 24 games. His numbers on the season still aren't impressive, but his versatility (2B/SS/OF) gives him extra fantasy value.
Description: Tampa Bay center fielder Desmond Jennings has had a nice month of July, going 20-for-64 with seven doubles, two homers and 14 runs.
Insight: He's still hitting just .249 because he came into the month batting .235. Jennings is on pace to finish with nearly identical numbers to the past two seasons. At age 27, he's likely not going to improve much from the player he is right now.
Description: Rays first baseman James Loney is one of the rare hitters with a history of success versus Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright.
Insight: Loney is a career .462 hitter (12-for-26) with a 1.154 OPS against Wainwright. He's a non-power hitting first baseman, who can hit for a decent average and knock in runs when needed, but isn't an everyday fantasy option.
Description: Rays shortstop Yunel Escobar owns a .583 average against Minnesota's Kevin Correia.
Insight: Escobar is hitting just .249 with four homers and a .657 OPS in 281 at-bats this season so he won't cost you much Sunday, but he could be a good option against Correia. He's gone 7-for-12 with two doubles against the right-hander.
Description: Rays right-hander Jeremy Hellickson has been optioned to Double-A to make one start during the All-Star break.
Insight: Hellickson allowed oe run on six hits in 4 1/3 innings in his season debut on July 8 after missing the entire season due to elbow surgery. He had a 5.17 ERA last year but his career ERA is 3.69.
Description: Tampa Bay center fielder Desmond Jennings left Friday's game after fouling a ball off his left knee and as expected is not in Saturday's starting lineup.
Insight: Jennings' X-rays were negative so he should be considered day-to-day. At most he should miss the final two games before the All-Star break. He's batting .246 with eight homers, 24 RBI, 48 runs and 12 steals.
Description: Rays right fielder Wil Myers (stress fracture in his right wrist) has been cleared to begin baseball activities.
Insight: Myers suffered the injury on May 30 when he collided with Desmond Jennings. The 23-year-old reigning AL Rookie of the Year has been done little this season batting .227 with five homers and 25 RBI.
Description: Rays right-hander Jeremy Hellickson (elbow) is scheduled to start Tuesday against Kansas City.
Insight: Hellickson has recovered from offseason elbow surgery and this will be his season debut. The team has already made room for him by moving Erik Bedard to the bullpen and optioning Vince Belnome to Triple-A Durham.
Description: Tampa Bay left-hander David Price narrowly missed striking out at least 10 batters for the sixth straight start Tuesday, but he still beat the Yankees to earn his seventh win.
Insight: Price uncharacteristically walked three batters, but he struck out nine and allowed just one run on four hits over seven innings. The left-hander has gone 3-3 with a 2.12 ERA, a 0.94 WHIP and a 63/8 K/BB in 46 2/3 innings over his last six starts.
Description: Tampa Bay third baseman Evan Longoria is 0-for-7 against Yankees starter David Phelps.
Insight: We're still waiting for the "real" Longoria to show up. Longoria is batting .264 with 10 homers and 37 RBI. If he's going to reach the 30-home run mark he's got to get going and Monday isn't likely to help.
Description: Rays outfielder Kevin Kiermaier went 2-for-5 with a solo homer Sunday against the Orioles.
Insight: Kiermaier has homered in back-to-back games and hit .306 with six homers, 12 RBI, 11 runs and a .934 OPS in his first 108 at-bats this season. He's worth a look if you're in need of power, but his average won't stay above .300.
Description: Tampa Bay second baseman Ben Zobrist has gone 8-for-21 (.381) with two doubles, two triples and a homer over his last five games.
Insight: Zobrist went 3-for-6 with two doubles and a homer Sunday at Baltimore. The utilityman has had an underwhelming season, hitting .253 with a .732 OPS, six home runs and just 18 RBI in 269 at-bats.
Description: Tampa Bay center fielder Desmond Jennings has just 44 homers on his resume in three and a half seasons, but four have been off of Orioles starter Miguel Gonzalez.
Insight: Jennings hasn't become the fantasy star it appeared he would be when he hit 10 homers and stole 20 bases in 247 at-bats as a rookie. With a .235 average, seven homers, 21 RBI, 38 runs and 12 steals, Jennings is on pace to put up similar numbers to the past two years, but he could be a viable option on Sunday against one of his favorite pitchers.
Description: The combined batting average from Jones (3-for-16), Chris Davis (2-for-11), Nick Markakis (2-for-10), Nelson Cruz (1-for-9) and Manny Machado (0-for-13) against Rays right-hander Alex Cobb is .136 with zero home runs and two RBI.
Insight: Cobb bombed against Pittsburgh in his last outing, but had shown progress in his previous two starts including yielding just four hits and one run against the Orioles in seven strong innings on June 18.
Description: Rays outfielder Kevin Kiermaier went 2-for-4 with a homer and two RBI Saturday against the Orioles.
Insight: Kiermaier has batted .301 with five homers and a .911 OPS in his first 103 career at-bats, but his average won't stay that high. He's struck out in 21.2 percent of his plate appearances and batted .347 on balls in play despite hitting line drives at a 12 percent rate.
Description: Tampa Bay center fielder Desmond Jennings went 1-for-4 with a solo homer Saturday at Baltimore.
Insight: Jennings hasn't become the fantasy star it appeared he would be when he hit 10 homers and stole 20 bases in 247 at-bats as a rookie. With a .235 average, seven homers, 21 RBI, 38 runs and 12 steals, Jennings is on pace to put up similar numbers to the past two years.
Description: Tampa Bay third baseman Evan Longoria went 3-for-4 in the second game of a day/night doubleheader Friday against Baltimore.
Insight: All three of his hits were singles. Longoria's current pace calls for 20 HR and 73 RBI. Those projected totals are both significantly lower than what Longoria posted during the 2013 season (32 HR, 88 RBI in 160 games).
Description: Tampa Bay left-hander David Price threw 8 1/3 innings of one-run ball and struck out 11 batters in Wednesday's win against the Pirates.
Insight: Price (6-7, 3.63 ERA) has thrown at least eight innings in four straight starts and struck out at least 10 batters in five straight. He has an absurd 144/14 K/BB in 124 innings and his ERA is down to its lowest point since April 11. His 10.29 K/BB is second best ever among pitchers who qualified for the ERA title.
Description: Rays first baseman James Loney is jusy 1-for-12 (.083) against Pittsburgh right-hander Edinson Volquez.
Insight: Loney is a non-power hitting first baseman, who can hit for a decent average and knock in runs when needed, but he hasn't put up an OPS over .778 since being a part-timer in 2007. Today's matchup should be avoided.
Description: Tampa Bay left-hander David Price lasted eight innings for the third straight start and struck out at least 10 batters for the fourth straight Friday against Houston. However, he dropped to 5-7 on the year after the Rays lost 3-1.
Insight: Price once again was bitten by the longball. He allowed a two-run homer to George Springer in the third inning and has given up 16 in 115 2/3 innings this season. In fact, he has three more homers allowed than walks. The left-hander leads the majors with 133 Ks, but his ERA is 3.81.
Description: Tampa Bay second baseman Ben Zobrist is not in Friday's starting lineup versus Jarred Cosart and the Houston Astros.
Insight: Zobrist (.248, 5 HR, 15 RBI) is producing at his lowest level in years, so this is not the end of the world. He's a career 1-for-6 versus Cosart and just 4-for-23 over the past seven days. Looks like he can use a day off.
Description: Rays outfielder Kevin Kiermaier went 1-for-4 with a homer and two RBI Thursday against the Astros.
Insight: Kiermaier has gone 24-for-76 (.316) with seven doubles, two triples and four homers this season. He was pushed into a starting role following Wil Myers' injury and hit third in the order Thursday.
Description: Tampa Bay left fielder David DeJesus fractured a bone in his left hand on a check swing Wednesday, according to Roger Mooney of the Tampa Tribune.
Insight: DeJesus will be in a splint for three weeks and could be out until August. The outfielder has never been a good fantasy option because he doesn't hit for power or average and doesn't steal bases.
Description: Tampa Bay starter Chris Archer has posted a 1.06 ERA in his last six starts.
Insight: Since mid-May Archer has been excellent, yielding just four earned runs in his last 34 innings pitched. Don't be fooled by his 3-4 record, he should post good numbers against Houston on Thursday.
Description: Rays starter Alex Cobb has given up seven hits and two runs (one earned) while striking out 17 batters in his last 13 1/3 innings.
Insight: Cobb has bounced back after allowing 16 runs on 24 hits in 15 1/3 innings from May 27 to June 7. His ERA dropped to 3.48 after he threw seven innings and allowed zero earned runs against the Orioles Wednesday afternoon.
Description: Tampa Bay center fielder Desmond Jennings only has 42 homers in his career, but three are against Tuesday night starter Miguel Gonzalez.
Insight: Jennings' offensive numbers (.242, 5 HR, 19 RBI, 32 runs, 12 steals) have been underwhelming to say the least, but he is batting .318 over the past five games. He might be worth a flier Tuesday.
Description: Rays left-hander Jake McGee earned his first save on Sunday.
Insight: He's been Tampa Bay's best reliever all season and with Grant Balfour out as closer, it's finally McGee's time to shine. Unfortunately, the Rays have been brutal lately, winning just four of their last 19 contests. The save chances will be few and far between but when they do come, McGee (2-0, 1.47 ERA) should be first in line.
Description: Tampa Bay second baseman Ben Zobrist enjoyed a three-hit game Sunday against Houston.
Insight: It was his second three-hit game of the series. Zobrist (.260, 5 HR, 15 RBI) has watched his average rise 19 points in the last four games. We'll see if Zobrist can stay hot Monday against Baltimore.
Description: Tampa Bay left-hander David Price (8 IP, 5 H, 3 ER) earned ten punchouts Sunday in a win over Houston.
Insight: He's recorded double-digit K's in each of his last three starts. Price's 121 strikeouts are the most in MLB and it's not that close. Stephen Strasburg is second (113 K's) with Felix Hernandez one behind Strasburg. All three have made 15 starts this season.
Description: Rays starter Jake Odorizzi fell to 2-7 despite holding the Cardinals to one run on three hits in 7 1/3 innings Tuesday night.
Insight: The Rays were shut out for the third straight game and have the worst record in baseball. Odorizzi's fielding-independent numbers are solid -- 10.52 K/9, 3.6 BB/9, 0.83 HR/9 -- but he has a 4.85 ERA and a 1.42 WHIP.
Description: Rays manager Joe Maddon said Friday that Grant Balfour "absolutely" is still the closer, but after another horrible outing he announced on Monday morning that the position was now a "closer-by-committee."
Insight: Balfour allowed five runs on Sunday to raise his ERA to an ugly 6.46 and a WHIP of 1.65. Jake McGee, Juan Carlos Oviedo and Joel Peralta are possible options.
Description: Tampa Bay left-hander Erik Bedard tossed six shutout frames Friday in a win over Seattle.
Insight: Bedard, a player the Rays picked up off the scrap heap at the start of the year, has been surprisingly effective this season. In 11 games (ten starts), the 35-year-old is 3-4 with a 3.61 ERA. His next start is Wednesday against the Cardinals.
Description: Rays starter David Price has a 4.03 ERA even though his K/BB is 101/9 in 91 2/3 innings.
Insight: Price struck out 11 batters and didn't walk anyone in 7 1/3 innings Wednesday against Miami. He allowed five runs, but just one was earned. The 28-year-old has had a problem with the longball this season; he's allowed 1.28 HR/9. However, his impressive K/BB suggests he'll improve his ERA.
Description: Rays right-hander Jeremy Hellickson (elbow) will begin a rehab assignment Saturday, according to Roger Mooney of the Tampa Tribune.
Insight: Hellickson is still recovering from offseason elbow surgery. He's coming off a year in which he had a 5.17 ERA in 174 innings, and although he had a 3.02 ERA in 2011-12 his FIP was 4.52 in that span.
Description: Tampa Bay starter Chris Archer pitched well Tuesday in a loss to Miami.
Insight: He only allowed one run in seven innings. Archer got off to a rocky start this year but he's really picked it up over his last four starts (1.09 ERA, 31 K's in 24 2/3 IP). Make sure he's in your lineup next time out against the Mariners.
Description: Tampa Bay center fielder Desmond Jennings isn't starting Tuesday against Miami. SOURCE: Roger Mooney, Tampa Bay Tribune
Insight: Jennings' offensive numbers (.237, 5 HR, 14 RBI) have been underwhelming to say the least. At least he has 11 stolen bases. Kevin Kiermaier (.316, 2 HR, 3 RBI) is getting the start in center field.
Description: Rays starter David Price avoided a suspension for hitting David Ortiz in the hip on Friday night.
Insight: Boston starter Brandon Workman was later ejected for throwing behind Evan Longoria's head in the sixth inning and suspended for six games Tuesday. Ortiz wasn't happy about Price avoiding punishment. "I don't think what they're doing is fair," Ortiz said. "I think the rules should be for everybody. We didn't start this up. I didn't hit nobody. Workman didn't hit anybody in the first inning. (Price) did."
Description: The Rays have placed Wil Myers on the disabled list with a sprained right wrist.
Insight: Myers collided with Desmond Jennings in Friday night's game. The 23-year-old reigning AL Rookie of the Year has had a sophomore slump this season and is hitting .227 with five homers, 25 RBI, 26 runs and a .667 OPS in 53 games. In his absence, the Rays will probably give more at-bats to utilityman Sean Rodriguez, who has hit .232 with six homers and 20 RBI in 82 at-bats this year.
Description: Tampa Bay catcher Ali Solis had to leave Saturday's game after getting hit in the face by a foul ball. SOURCE: MLB on Fox
Insight: The ball bounced off home plate before coming back and hitting Solis right below the helmet. Jose Molina (.133, 0 HR, 0 RBI) entered the game with a 1-2 count and struck out on the very next pitch.
Description: Rays shortstop Yunel Escobar will sit out Saturday against the Red Sox. SOURCE: Joe Smith, Tampa Bay Times
Insight: Escobar exited last night's game in the tenth inning because of a tight quad. Ben Zobrist (.253, 3 HR, 10 RBI) will slide over to shortstop with Sean Rodriguez (.241, 6 HR, 20 RBI) filling in at second base.
Description: Tampa Bay right fielder Wil Myers is not in Saturday's starting lineup.
Insight: Myers collided with Desmond Jennings in Friday night's game and came out of it with a sore right wrist. Matt Joyce will get the start. Myers is struggling to live up to expectations, batting just .227 with five homers and 25 RBI.
Description: Rays second baseman Ben Zobrist has been activated from the 15-day DL.
Insight: He was out with a dislocated left thumb. Zobrist owners are looking for more than the .260 with three homers and nine RBI that the 2B has produced to date. His .716 OPS is the worst since 2010.
Description: Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings will bat cleanup for the second time this season and third time of his career.
Insight: Jennings has gone 7-for-24 with five runs, a home run and two steals in his last six games, but he doesn't seem like a typical No. 4 hitter. For the year he's batting .243 with five homers, 13 RBI, 26 runs, 11 SB and a .730 OPS.
Description: Rays starter Erik Bedard gave up more hits Monday at Toronto than he did in his previous four starts combined.
Insight: Bedard gave up 12 hits and eight runs (seven earned) in four innings. The left-hander had allowed just three earned runs on 16 hits over 28 innings in his previous five starts. The Blue Jays have hit 22 homers off left-handers this season, most in baseball.
Description: Rays right-hander Chris Archer tied a career-high with 11 punchouts Friday in a no-decision against the Red Sox.
Insight: He did it at a snail's pace, often taking 30 seconds in between pitches. Archer (3-2, 4.11 ERA) hasn't allowed a run in his last two starts but he's walked nine batters over that span. Overall, he's allowed 19 free passes in his last 26 1/3 innings.
Description: Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings is just 2-for-15 (.133) against Boston starter John Lackey.
Insight: When he was coming up he was supposed to be the "next Carl Crawford" ... we're still waiting. He's batting .241 with four homers, 11 RBI, 23 runs and nine stolen bases. He's not there yet. Avoid this matchup.
Description: Tampa Bay starter Alex Cobb hasn't alllowed a run in his last three starts.
Insight: Thursday was Cobb's first start in over a month after missing time with a strained oblique. He was excellent, limiting the first-place A's to just three hits over 6 2/3 shutout frames. Cobb's next outing is scheduled for Tuesday against Toronto.
Description: Rays third baseman Evan Longoria is back in Thursday's starting lineup.
Insight: Longoria was not in the original lineup and can probably use the day off. He's batted just .111 in five games this week. His OPS is 150 points below last season and 168 lower than his career OPS of (.860).
Description: Rays right-hander Alex Cobb (oblique) had a successful bullpen session on Monday, which puts him in line to return to the rotation on Thursday against the Athletics. SOURCE: Marc Topkin, Tampa Bay Times
Insight: The Rays have had Cobb (1-18, 1.89 ERA) tentatively scheduled for May 22, and he has cleared all his hurdles.
Description: Rays catcher Ryan Hanigan left Friday night's game due to cramping in right leg and is questionable for Saturday's game against the LA Angels.
Insight: The 33-year-old Hanigan shouldn be considered day-to-day. He's batting .238 with three homers and 22 RBI this season. Jose Molina would go if Hanigan gets the day off, but he has no fantasy value with his .128 batting average.
Description: Rays manager Joe Maddon said Friday that Grant Balfour "absolutely" is still the closer, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Insight: Another day, another vote of confidence from a manager for a closer. Balfour allowed three runs without getting an out in the ninth inning Thursday and has a 6.46 ERA, a 1.63 WHIP and a terrible 11/14 K/BB in 15 1/3 innings this season.
Description: Rays RHP Jake Odorizzi allowed just one hit and struck out seven over six scoreless innings Wednesday at Seattle.
Insight: Odorizzi has fanned 18 batters and allowed no runs in his last 11 innings. He still has a 4.89 ERA and a 1.55 WHIP because he allowed 36 hits, 14 walks and 21 runs in his first 27 2/3 innings this season.
Description: Rays second baseman Ben Zobrist suffered a dislocated left thumb during Wednesday's game, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Insight: Zobrist sustained the injury while sliding head-first into a base. Fantasy owners are lucky the infielder avoided ligament damage. He'll remain with the team and be reevaluated after the road trip, which ends on May 18, so we may not see him for at least another four games.
Description: Rays second baseman Ben Zobrist left Wednesday's game in the fifth inning with an apparent left thumb injury after sliding head-first into second base, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Insight: Fantasy owners have to hope Zobrist didn't suffer ligament damage in his thumb like Bryce Harper and Josh Hamilton did while sliding head-first earlier this season.
Description: Rays left-hander David Price pitched all nine innings Tuesday in a win against Seattle.
Insight: Price (9 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 12 K's, 0 BB) went up against Hisashi Iwakuma in a pitching battle for the ages. The only run Price allowed came across on a Robinson Cano groundout in the first inning. The victory was his first since April 22nd.
Description: Rays starter Erik Bedard allowed just one hit in six scoreless innings Saturday against the Indians.
Insight: Bedard (2-1, 3.38 ERA, 1.43 WHIP) has given up 11 hits and two earned runs in his last 17 innings after recording a 7.45 ERA in his first three appearances. AL-only owners can give him a try his next time out on the road against the Angels, but his 17/14 K/BB in 26 2/3 innings spells doom.
Description: Rays third baseman Evan Longoria has crushed Orioles starter Chris Tillman in their previous meetings.
Insight: Longoria has a .417 average (10-for-24) with two doubles, four homers and three walks against Tillman, who will start Tuesday against Tampa Bay. Perhaps that will help Longoria end his nine-game homer drought.
Description: Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings has hit safely in seven straight games (11-for-31).
Insight: Jennings has blasted three homers during his hitting streak and went 3-for-4 with a double Sunday against the Yankees to raise his average to .294 and his OPS to .890. He has four homers, six steals and 18 runs this season.
Description: Tampa Bay right fielder Wil Myers went 2-for-5 with a double, an inside-the-park homer and four RBI Sunday at New York.
Insight: Myers' inside-the-park HR came in the top of the third inning when his fly ball hit the top of the fence in right-center field, ricocheted off a leaping Jacoby Ellsbury's gut and rolled on the warning track toward right field. Myers didn't even run hard to first base but still had time to make it home because the cut-off man dropped the ball. Myers went 6-for-16 with two homers, seven RBI and four runs in Tampa Bay's three-game series with the Yankees.
Description: Rays right-hander Jeremy Hellickson won't be back in the rotation until the end of June. SOURCE: Marc Topkin, Tampa Bay Times
Insight: Hellickson is still recovering from offseason elbow surgery. The plan was originally for him to be back by June 1st but that timetable was obviously a bit unrealistic. It's hard for fantasy owners to trust him after the mediocre year he had in 2013 (12-10, 5.17 ERA).
Description: Rays 2B/SS/OF Ben Zobrist is a career .125 hitter (2-for-160 with seven strikeouts versus White Sox starter John Danks.
Insight: Zobrist's career average in April is just .246, but he's off to a great start this season batting .315. The 32-year-old has just 10 strikeouts to go with 14 walks, three homers, 16 runs and eight RBI. Saturday, however, is an unfavorable matchup.
Description: Tampa Bay first baseman James Loney stayed hot with three hits Tuesday against the Twins.
Insight: He's been ridiculous over his last four games, providing nine hits over that span (.563 AVG). Loney, who has never been a big power guy, is on pace for 97 RBI this season. Fantasy owners in the market for a corner infielder could do a lot worse than Loney (.302, 1 HR, 12 RBI).
Description: Rays starter David Price pitched a complete game Tuesday against Minnesota.
Insight: Joe Mauer hit a hard line drive off Price's leg in the fourth inning but it didn't seem to affect him as the left-hander still finished with a season-high 12 strikeouts over 113 pitches. Price's next start is Sunday against the White Sox.
Description: Tampa Bay center fielder Desmond Jennings (groin) did not start Saturday or Sunday, but is back in the lineup for Tuesday.
Insight: Jennings is batting .264 this season with one homer, five RBI and seven runs scored. The groin injury is likely to restrict his stolen base ability for a while. He's stolen at least 20 bases in each of the last three seasons, but has just one so far this year.
Description: Tampa Bay right-hander Chris Archer was roughed up by the Orioles in his last start but he gave up just one run on three hits in 6 2/3 innings Saturday against the Yankees.
Insight: Archer has tossed three quality starts in four chances this year, but he gave up seven earned runs on 12 hits over five innings in his one non-quality outing. The 25-year-old is 2-1 with a 3.65 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP in 24 2/3 innings.
Description: Rays 2B/SS/OF Ben Zobrist is a career .417 hitter (5-for-12) versus Yankees right-hander Hiroki Kuroda.
Insight: Zobrist's five hits have all been of the extra base variety, including two homers and a 1.783 OPS. He's batting .268 this season with a .388 OBP due to walking 11 times already. He's a solid play on Friday.
Description: According to Marc Topkins of the Tampa Bay Times, Rays left-hander Matt Moore has scheduled Tommy John surgery for next week.
Insight: Moore was diagnosed with a torn UCL in his elbow which almost always means going under the knife, so this isn't a surprise. Moore was a fantasy stud last season going 17-4 with a 3.29 ERA and 143 Ks in 150 1/3 innings pitched. He was 0-2 with a 2.70 ERA before the injury.
Description: Rays 2B/SS/OF Ben Zobrist is a career .105 hitter (2-for-19) versus Baltimore right-hander Miguel Gonzalez.
Insight: Zobrist is a career .277 hitter left-handed (.256 right-handed), but hasn't had any success versus Gonzalez. Add in a strong wind blowing in from left field on Tuesday and you have all the ingredients for a low output evening.
Description: Rays 2B/SS/OF Ben Zobrist is a career .435 hiiter (10-for-23) versus Baltimore left-hander Wei-Yin Chen.
Insight: Zobrist is coming off a two-homer afternoon and has hit safely in six of his last seven games to raise his average to .277 with an .871 OPS. Add in a strong wind blowing out to left field on Monday and you have all the ingredients for another solid day with the bat.
Description: Rays 2B/SS/OF Ben Zobrist went yard from both sides of the plate and drove in four runs Sunday at Cincinnati.
Insight: Zobrist is batting .277 with three homers, six RBI and an .871 OPS so far. As usual, he's walking a ton (8 BBs, 7 Ks). The utilityman is a career .238 hitter in April, but he's off to a nice start for a change.
Description: Rays right-hander Alex Cobb strained his left oblique Saturday in a win against Cincinnati. He's already been placed on the 15-day disabled list.
Insight: That opens up a spot in the rotation for Erik Bedard, who was recently called up from Triple-A Durham. Cobb (1-1, 1.89 ERA) will be eligible to return on April 28th, though it's doubtful he'll be able to recover that quickly.
Description: Tampa Bay starter Alex Cobb was dominant in Saturday's 1-0 win over Cincinnati (7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 5 K's).
Insight: Cobb (1-1, 1.89 ERA) threw all zeros for the second straight outing. If Cobb keeps this up, he'll be a no-brainer for the All-Star team in a few months. His next start is against the Yankees (6-6).
Description: Tampa Bay left-hander David Price came up just short of a shutout Friday at Cincinnati but he still picked up the win.
Insight: Price (2-0, 2.91 ERA) gave up an opposite-field homer to Joey Votto in the bottom of the ninth and finished with 10 strikeouts and one walk in 8 1/3 innings. Grant Balfour picked up the final two outs for his third save but not before walking three batters.
Description: Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports reports that Matt Moore's injury involves his UCL. The Rays left-hander left Monday's start with elbow discomfort and was placed on the DL Tuesday
Insight: Moore will see Dr. James Andrews for a second opinion after an MRI on his left elbow was inconclusive. Moore saw his average fastball velocity decline from 94.1 mph as a rookie to 92.3 mph last year and dealt with elbow soreness near the end of the season. He could require Tommy John surgery.
Description: The Rays have placed Matt Moore (elbow) will see Dr. James Andrews for a second opinion, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Insight: Moore's MRI was inconclusive. The left-hander left Monday's start with elbow discomfort and was placed on the DL Tuesday. Moore saw his average fastball velocity decline from 94.1 mph as a rookie to 92.3 mph last year and dealt with elbow soreness near the end of the season.
Description: The Rays have placed Matt Moore of the 15-day disabled list with a left elbow injury.
Insight: Moore saw his average fastball velocity decline from 94.1 mph as a rookie to 92.3 mph last year and dealt with elbow soreness near the end of the season. He's still awaiting the result of an MRI.
Description: Rays first baseman James Loney won't start Friday against the Rangers.
Insight: Though left-hander Joe Saunders is throwing for Texas, Loney actually hit the same against lefties as he did against right-handers last season (.299). Sean Rodriguez will get the start at first tonight with Loney likely to return on Saturday.
Description: Tampa Bay right fielder Wil Myers wasn't available Thursday and is questionable for Friday's game against Texas due to flu-like symptoms.
Insight: Matt Joyce (.556, 0 HR, 3 RBI), usually would take over in right field, but he's not very good against left-handers (career .193 batting average vs lefties) so Brandon Guyer might get the spot start.
Description: Tampa Bay right-hander Chris Archer has agreed to a six-year, $25.5 million contract extension.
Insight: Archer was excellent last year in his first full year in the major leagues (9-7, 3.22 ERA in 23 starts). He went for only a dollar or two in most auction drafts and could wind up being one of the year's biggest fantasy bargains.
Description: Rays utility man Sean Rodriguez has been placed on paternity leave.
Insight: Mets second baseman Daniel Murphy got some heat on talk radio for beginning the season on paternity leave though we doubt Rodriguez will receive as much criticism. The Rays don't really have a spot for Rodriguez right now and neither should fantasy owners.
Description: Rays left fielder David DeJesus (bruised foot) is out of the lineup again Wednesday.
Insight: DeJesus left Monday's season opener with a bruised foot. Logan Forsythe will DH and Sean Rodriguez will start in left field Wednesday. Matt Joyce will take a seat with left-hander Mark Buehrle on the hill.
Description: Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings is a .500 hitter versus Toronto's starter Mark Buehrle (6-for-12).
Insight: He already has three doubles, two walks, a steal and just one strikeout. Jennings has been a bit of a disappointment the last two seasons, but is off to a quick start this season (.571) and has a favorable matchup on Wednesday.
Description: Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings has logged two straight two-hit games to start the season.
Insight: He already has three doubles, two walks, a steal and just one strikeout. Jennings has been a bit of a disappointment the last two seasons, hitting .249 with an average of 14 homers, 50 RBI, 84 runs and 26 steals per season.
Description: Rays left fielder David DeJesus left Monday's game against the Blue Jays.
Insight: He appeared to hurt his arm diving back to first on a pick-off attempt, accordingto Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times. If he has to miss time, it will lead to more playing time for Logan Forsythe and Sean Rodriguez.
Description: Hitting the knuckleball has never come easy for Tampa Bay center fielder Desmond Jennings.
Insight: In 16 at bats versus R.A. Dickey, Jennings has just one hit to show for himself. Jennings (.252, 14 HR, 54 RBI) definitely has sleeper potential, just not against Dickey. Make sure he's on your bench today.
Description: Rays promising right-hander Alex Colome has been suspended for 50 days for a PED violation, according to Yahoo writer Jeff Passan.
Insight: Colome threw 16 innings at the major league level last season with a 2.25 ERA and 12 strikeouts, but he'll have to sit for the first two months of 2014. The one thing the Rays have is pitching, so this won't hurt the big club.
Description: Matt Moore will have X-rays on his jaw and teeth roots on Monday. The Tampa Bay ace was struck in the face by a comebacker Sunday in a spring training game versus the Red Sox. SOURCE: Marc Topkin, Tampa Bay Times
Insight: It's been a scary spring for pitchers with Aroldis Chapman going down with a facial fracture and now this injury to Moore. The left-hander tied for third in the AL with 17 wins last season. It wouldn't be surprising if Moore topped that number in 2014 but first, he'll have to get healthy.
Description: Rays left-hander Matt Moore was hit in the side of the face by a comebacker on Sunday, but he appears to have avoided a serious injury.
Insight: Moore received stitches for a laceration on his lip but has no concussion symptoms, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. He threw four no-hit innings before leaving the game, though he did walk four batters and now has 15 walks in 14 1/3 innings this spring.
Description: Rays left-hander Matt Moore has walked 11 batters in 10 1/3 innings this spring.
Insight: He has allowed 13 hits and five earned runs too. Moore saw a decline in velocity of nearly two mph last season and walked 4.55 batters per nine innings. He also missed time with elbow soreness in the second half. Don't pay for the 17-4 record and 3.29 ERA he had in 2013.
Description: Rays manager Joe Maddon has named Jake Odorizzi the team's fifth starter, according to Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times. Odorizzi beat out Erik Bedard and Cesar Ramos.
Insight: The Rays acquired Odorizzi from the Royals along with Wil Myers in the package for James Shields, and the 23-year-old had a 3.94 ERA in 29 2/3 innings last season. He also had a 3.33 ERA, a 1.13 WHIP and 124 strikeouts in 124 1/3 innings with Triple-A Durham. He'll try to hold down the fort until Jeremy Hellickson returns from elbow surgery in June. Ramos will pitch in high-leverage situations out of the bullpen, and Bedard will opt out of his contract if he's demoted to the minors.
Description: Rays right fielder Wil Myers (quad) will return to the lineup Tuesday.
Insight: Myers fouled a ball of his right leg on Saturday, but he avoided a serious injury. The reigning American League Rookie of the Year hit 13 homers in 335 at-bats last season and flashed 35-homer power in the minors.
Description: Rays right fielder Wil Myers is aiming to return Tuesday against Minnesota. He fouled a ball off his quad Saturday in a spring training exhibition with Pittsburgh. SOURCE: Roger Mooney, Tampa Tribune
Insight: His X-rays came back negative so it looks like it's just a bruise. The reigning American League Rookie of the Year should be a threat for 20+ homers if he can stay healthy.
Description: Tampa Bay starter Jeremy Hellickson is targeting June 1st for his return from elbow surgery. SOURCE: Tampa Bay Times
Insight: The Rays originally expected him back in mid-May but that's not going to happen. Hellickson (12-10, 5.17 ERA) is coming off a rocky season that even included a demotion to Double-A. So far, he's gone undrafted in the vast majority of fantasy leagues.
Description: Rays 2B/SS/OF Ben Zobrist has been dealing with a sore back after tweaking in during a workout Wednesday, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Insight: Zobrist turned in a decent year in 2013 with 12 HR, 71 RBI and a .275 average in 157 regular season contests. He also successfully stole 11 out of 14 bases. His position flexibility makes him a fantasy favorite.
Description: Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings arrived to camp having put on 10-15 pounds of muscle, according to tampabay.com. "I get here every spring and I probably lose at least 10 pounds, so I feel I'll be around what I want to play with once the season starts," he said.
Insight: Jennings burst onto the scene with 10 homers and 20 steals in just 63 games in 2011, but he's followed that up with .246-13 HR-31 SB in 2012 and.252-14 HR-20 SB last season while playing less than 140 games in both years. However, the center fielder improved both his K and BB rates last season and increased his slugging percentage. Manager Joe Maddon hasn't decided if he'll stick with Jennings in the leadoff spot or drop him in the order this season.
Description: Left-handed starter Erik Bedard has signed a minor-league deal with Tampa Bay.
Insight: Another team takes a shot at the talented, but never has reached his potential lefty. He hasn't recorded double-digit wins since 2007 and his ERA has been north of 4.50 over the past two seasons.
Description: Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe believes there's a growing sense that New York will swoop in at the last minute and sign free agent reliever Fernando Rodney.
Insight: A Rodney signing is definitely within the realm of possibilies for a Yankees team that has gotten increasingly sneakier in recent years. Rodney was initially being pursued by the Mets and Orioles but now it looks like he could wind up as New York's setup man on Opening Day. Obviously, moving to the eighth inning would ruin any potential fantasy value that Rodney might have had.
Description: Former Orioles DH Wilson Betemit has signed on with the Rays. SOURCE: Jon Heyman, CBS Sports
Insight: His minor league contract includes an invite to spring training. Betemit missed most of the 2013 campaign while battling knee injuries. The year before, he hit .261 with 12 HR and 40 RBI in 102 games. He's not going to be an everyday player in Tampa.
Description: Less than 24 hours ago it looked like Fernando Rodney was about to sign with the Orioles. Now he's talking to the Mets, according to ESPN New York's Adam Rubin.
Insight: No deal is imminent. Rodney had one of the greatest seasons by a closer in major league history in 2012 but came back to Earth with an up and down 2013 campaign (3.38 ERA, 37-for-45 in save opportunities). He has an elite changeup and his fastball can still touch the high 90s, though it doesn't always land in the strike zone.
Description: Earlier today we heard from Grantland's Jonah Keri that Fernando Rodney was close to signing with the Orioles. The Baltimore Sun's Dan Connolly has since refuted that claim and says the two sides haven't spoken in weeks.
Insight: We're not sure what the holdup is. The Orioles need a closer and Rodney is the best one available now that Grant Balfour (who failed his physical when he went to Baltimore last month) is off the market. Despite Connolly's insistence that the two sides aren't talking, Rodney to the O's makes too much sense not to happen.
Description: David Price and the Rays avoided arbitration Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $14 million contract.
Insight: It doesn't mean that he'll still be pitching for the Rays at the end of the season if another team offers the right combination of youngsters. The 2012 AL Cy Young winner is an elite fantasy arm coming off a mediocre season (10-8, 3.33 ERA, 1.098 WHIP).
Description: James Loney is staying with the Rays. SOURCE: Ken Rosenthal, Fox Sports
Insight: His new deal will pay him $21 million over the next three seasons. The 29-year-old hit .299 last year with 13 HR and 75 RBI. He's expected to hit third behind Wil Myers and ahead of Evan Longoria.
Description: The D'Backs traded righthander Heath Bell to the Rays on Monday. SOURCE: Ken Rosenthal, Fox Sports
Insight: With Fernando Rodney likely to leave in free agency, Bell should take over the closer's role for Tampa Bay. It's always an adventure with Bell but the good news is, he should have plenty of opportunities for saves. He's worth thinking about in the later rounds of this year's fantasy draft.
Description: The Rockies are looking for a new first baseman and James Loney appears to be high on their list. SOURCE: Denver Post
Insight: Loney experienced a career resurgence last year with the Rays (.299, 13 HR, 75 RBI in 158 games). In Colorado, he'd be replacing Todd Helton, who recently announced his retirement after 17 seasons.
Description: Cleveland could be in the running for free agent closer Fernando Rodney. SOURCE: Cleveland Plain Dealer
Insight: They've also shown an interest in former Dodgers and Giants reliever Brian Wilson. The Indians parted ways with Chris Perez earlier this month. Rodney still offers a plus-fastball and one of the most deceiving changeups in the game but he's shown a tendency to get rattled and his control can be hit or miss.
Description: David Price acknowledged Wednesday that he has probably played his final game as a Tampa Bay Ray. SOURCE: ESPN
Insight: We had heard rumblings about Price possibly getting traded this offseason but now it seems almost certain to happen. Obviously, it will require a team to give up a package of top level prospects, but we're guessing plenty of clubs will be after the 2012 Cy Young winner when the season is over.
Description: Rays backup catcher Jose Lobaton stole the show with a walkoff home run Monday in a wild win over Boston.
Insight: The homer was Lobaton's first career postseason hit. It was also the first homer allowed by Koji Uehara since June 30th. The Rays had never had a walkoff home run in the playoffs before tonight.
Description: Tampa Bay starter David Price, who went on a Twitter rant over the weekend, could be shopped this winter.
Insight: In fact, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, many big league executives have expressed that they'd be surprised if Price isn't traded. The Rays rarely keep their star players when they reach free agency with Evan Longoria being the most notable exception.
Description: Tampa Bay center fielder Desmond Jennings has managed only one hit in 11 previous encounters with John Lackey.
Insight: Jennings was punched out twice in Friday's loss and overall, he's just a .240 career hitter against the Red Sox. Lackey has looked excellent since coming back from Tommy John surgery and he shouldn't have much trouble getting Jennings to swing and miss on Saturday.
Description: Rays utility man Ben Zobrist has a tough matchup against Boston left-hander Jon Lester.
Insight: Zobrist is just 9-for-48 (.188) lifetime against Lester with 18 strikeouts. It was a down year for Zobrist in most categories, but he's still a viable fantasy asset because he fills up the box score ... just not against Lester.
Description: Alex Cobb guided the Rays to victory Wednesday with a dominating performance against the Indians.
Insight: Cobb wasn't fooling many hitters (he allowed eight hits) but he kept the Indians off the scoreboard and that's all that matters. The Rays haven't set their rotation yet for the Division Series but we're guessing Cobb will pitch in one of Tampa Bay's two home games (Games 3 and 4).
Description: Desmond Jennings is back in center field for Wednesday's Wild Card game versus Cleveland.
Insight: Jennings (hamstring) isn't close to 100 percent but in a win or go home situation, the Rays need their leadoff man in the lineup. The 26-year-old has never faced Indians righthander Danny Salazar (2-3, 3.12 ERA).
Description: Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings (hamstring) is expected to play Wednesday night in the Wild Card Game against the Cleveland Indians. SOURCE: MLB.com
Insight: Jennings started in Game 163 against the Rangers and went 1-for-3 with a walk after missing eight straight days. The outfielder was put in position to test the hamstring immediately, as he tried to stretch a broken-bat hit down the left-field line into a double on the first pitch of the game but was thrown out by Craig Gentry.
Description: In a surprise move, injured Rays outfielder Desmond Jennings is starting in center field Monday in a tiebreaker game against Texas.
Insight: He's leading off. Jennings (.252, 14 HR, 54 RBI) has been bothered by a sore hamstring for the better part of a week but with Tampa Bay's season on the line, he isn't holding anything back. ESPN's Pedro Gomez said David DeJesus would move to center field if Jennings is in too much pain to finish the game.
Description: Tampa Bay center fielder Desmond Jennings is likely reduced to being a pinch hitter in Monday's tiebreaker game as his hamstring injury is still preventing him from playing in the outfield, according to a Tampa Bay Times report.
Insight: Jennings (.252, 14 HR, 54 RBI, 81 runs, 20 SB) might have a chance to play Wednesday, should the Rays advance that far.
Description: Tampa Bay center fielder Desmond Jennings is still out with a bum hamstring.
Insight: Jennings (.252, 14 HR, 54 RBI, 20 SB) could be available to pinch-hit like he was last night but it doesn't look like he's ready to resume playing the outfield. His health is a big question mark heading into the postseason, assuming the Rays even qualify for it.
Description: Tampa Bay righthander Alex Cobb (7 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 4 Ks) was excellent Thursday in a win over the Yankees.
Insight: Cobb hasn't missed a beat since his return from a concussion (5-1, 2.41 ERA in his last nine starts). The Rays would be crazy not to start him in the postseason, assuming they are able to advance past the Wild Card round.
Description: Evan Longoria powered the Rays with two homers Wednesday in a win against New York.
Insight: That gives Longoria his third career 30 home run season. By winning, the Rays were able to eliminate the Yankees from the postseason hunt. Meanwhile, Tampa Bay's magic number for clinching the AL Wild Card is three.
Description: Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings had to leave Sunday's game against Baltimore because of a leg injury and did not play in Monday's contest either.
Insight: Jennings suffered a mild hamstring injury and is listed as day-to-day. We're still waiting for the guy who was supposed to be the "next" Carl Crawford. So far he's batting .251 with 14 HR, 54 RBI, 81 runs and 20 SB.
Description: As expected, the Rays activated reliever Jesse Crain from the disabled list on Monday.
Insight: He wasn't asked to pitch in Monday's game against the Orioles. Certainly the Rays would like to see him pitch a couple times before deciding on their postseason roster. Of course, they still have to make the postseason first (their magic number is five).
Description: Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings had to leave Sunday's game against Baltimore because of a leg injury and is not in Monday's starting lineup.
Insight: Jennings suffered a mild hamstring injury and is listed as day-to-day. We're still waiting for the guy who was supposed to be the "next" Carl Crawford. So far he's batting .251 with 14 HR, 54 RBI, 81 runs and 20 SB.
Description: Enny Romero is making his major league debut Sunday against Baltimore.
Insight: The Rays lefthander is starting in place of Jeremy Hellickson, who was scratched after pitching in Friday's 18-inning win. In 28 minor league starts this season, Romero is 11-7 with a 2.61 ERA.
Description: Rays third baseman Evan Longoria was scratched from Sunday's lineup due to flu-like symptoms, according to Roger Mooney of the Tampa Tribune.
Insight: Longoria is hitting .204 with one home run over his last 26 games and .219 with 12 homers over his last 76. At age 27, we're still waiting for the monster breakout from Longoria. His career highs for a season are 33 homers, 113 RBI, a .294 average and an .896 OPS.
Description: Rays starter David DeJesus is 6-for-11 (.545) with one homer and six walks against former teammate Scott Feldman of the Orioles.
Insight: DeJesus and Feldman played together with the Cubs this season before ending up with different AL East teams. The veteran outfielder is hitting .267 in 27 games since joining Tampa Bay and is not a good fantasy option most days but he has a good matchup Sunday.
Description: Desmond Jennings stroked his 14th home run of the season Saturday in a win against Baltimore.
Insight: The Rays center fielder produced a season-high four RBI in the contest. Jennings (.249, 14 HR, 54 RBI, 20 SB) sat on the bench for the first nine innings yesterday because of a stiff neck but clearly it was never a serious issue.
Description: Rays starter Alex Cobb held the Orioles to just one run in 8 1/3 innings Saturday at Tropicana Field.
Insight: He might have gotten the shutout if not for a Chris Davis bloop triple that left fielder David DeJesus lost in the lights. Tampa Bay's magic number to clinch the American League Wild Card is eight games.
Description: Tampa Bay righthander Roberto Hernandez is expected to start Sunday against Baltimore. SOURCE: Marc Topkin, Tampa Bay Times
Insight: That was originally Jeremy Hellickson's day to pitch but the Rays were forced to use him out of the pen Friday in an 18-inning win over Baltimore. Hernandez hasn't made a start in almost a month (August 27th against Los Angeles).
Description: Desmond Jennings has returned to Tampa Bay's starting lineup. SOURCE: Marc Topkin, Tampa Bay Times
Insight: Jennings was scratched with a neck injury Friday night but ended up logging four at bats after coming in as a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning. He's just a .188 lifetime hitter against Orioles starter Miguel Gonzalez.
Description: Making just his seventh major league appearance out of the bullpen, Tampa Bay righthander Jeremy Hellickson pitched 2 1/3 innings for the win Friday in an 18-inning win over Baltimore.
Insight: It puts the Rays in a bit of a bind because Hellickson was supposed to start Sunday's game. Now they'll likely to turn to Jake Odorizzi, who went 9-6 with a 3.33 ERA this season in 22 starts for Triple-A Durham.
Description: Tampa Bay left fielder David DeJesus notched four hits in Friday's marathon win over Baltimore.
Insight: The game set numerous major league records including the number of pitchers and players used. Since acquiring him from the Nationals in mid-August, DeJesus has hit .278 for the Rays with five RBI.
Description: The Rays were hoping to bring Jesse Crain off the DL on Wednesday but instead they'll have to wait a few more days. SOURCE: Marc Topkin, Tampa Bay Times
Insight: Crain (2-3, 0.74 ERA), who was traded from the White Sox before the trade deadline, hasn't pitched since June because of a shoulder injury. When he does return, he should be a valuable arm out of the pen.
Description: Rays starter Jeremy Hellickson surrendered five runs over 2 2/3 innings Tuesday against the Rangers.
Insight: Hellickson was decent in his first two starts since returning from the minors, but Tuesday's outing shows why fantasy owners cannot trust him at this point. He is 1-6 with a 7.75 ERA over his last nine starts.
Description: Rays catcher Jose Molina is expected to rejoin the team Friday against Minnesota. SOURCE: Roger Mooney, Tampa Tribune
Insight: Molina (.242, 2 HR, 17 RBI) has been attending to a family matter. If you're going to own one of the Molina brothers in fantasy, Yadier is the far better choice (.318, 11 HR, 65 RBI in 120 games) .
Description: Tampa Bay first baseman James Loney owns a .321 lifetime average against Boston's Jake Peavy.
Insight: Loney was a member of the Dodgers for most of his career so he faced Peavy often when the right-hander was on the Padres. He's 9-for-28 with four doubles and two home runs against Peavy. After batting .247 with a .566 OPS in August, Loney has gone 12-for-36 (.333) with two home runs and five walks in 10 games this month.
Description: Tampa Bay utility player Ben Zobrist is an ugly 4-for-34 (.118) with a .397 OPS against Boston starter Clay Buchholz.
Insight: Zobrist is not having the year expected of him with most of his totals falling from a solid 2012. At the top of the list is an OPS which is currently running 72 points below last season and 11 homers vs. 20 a season ago. This is an extremely unfavorable matchup.
Description: Rays All-Star lefthander Matt Moore earned his 15th win of the season Tuesday in his return from the disabled list.
Insight: Moore had a little trouble finding the strike zone at first (four walks) but he settled in eventually. In 5 1/3 innings, Moore allowed four hits and one unearned run. The 94 pitches he threw were a little under his season average (98.4) but that was to be expected in his first outing in over a month. Look for Moore (15-3, 3.27 ERA) to be a solid fantasy contributor down the stretch.
Description: Rays starter Chris Archer has thrown three straight starts of seven innings after giving up five earned runs in five innings on Aug. 13 against Seattle.
Insight: He allowed one earned runs on five hits, struck out five and walked none over seven innings Wednesday in a win over the Angels and is 8-5 with a 2.81 ERA this season. Walks were the main concern for Archer in the minors, but he has walked 2.81 batters per nine innings over 102 1/3 innings this season.
Description: The Rays have demoted Jeremy Hellickson to High-A Charlotte.
Insight: Rays manager Joe Maddon said the right-hander is going down for rest and will return when Charlotte's season ends, according to Roger Mooney of the Tampa Tribune. Hellickson has gone 0-5 with a 9.00 ERA and a 2.12 WHIP in 25 innings over his last six starts, failing to get out of the fifth inning in any of them.
Description: Rays left-hander Matt Moore is expected to return to the mound on Sept. 3 according to manager Joe Maddon.
Insight: Moore was initially expected to return last weekend, but he felt discomfort in his elbow when throwing his changeup during a bullpen session last week. When last we left the third-year starter he was in the middle of a very good season: 14-3, 3.41 ERA, 1.228 WHIP and 115 Ks in 121.1 IP.
Description: Rays right fielder Matt Joyce has three homers over his last seven games after failing to hit one for 45 straight games (29 starts) going back to June 16. He's also batting .368 (14-for-38) over his last 14 games. That still doesn't mean you should start him Sunday against Ivan Nova, however.
Insight: Joyce is 3-for-23 (.130) lifetime against the Yankees starter, with eight strikeouts.
Description: Tampa Bay catcher Jose Molina is hitless in 16 at-bats versus Yankees left-hander C.C. Sabathia and likely won't get the Saturday start.
Insight: Molina isn't much of an offensive threat to begin with (.241, .612 OPS) so his lack of success against Sabathia shouldn't change many lineups. Backup Jose Lobaton homered on Friday night and has a better chance against the big lefty.
Description: Rays third baseman Evan Longoria "owns" Yankees starter CC Sabathia in their 62 previous encounters.
Insight: Longoria is 19-for-50 (.380) with five doubles, six homers, 12 RBI and 12 walks against Sabathia, so he clearly sees the ball well coming out of the big lefty's hand. Longoria has homers in three of his last five games to warm up for this extremely favorable matchup.
Description: Tampa Bay righthander Chris Archer beat the Yankees for the third time on Friday.
Insight: By doing so, he became the first rookie to defeat New York three times in a season since Kevin Brown in 1989. The victory was Archer's first since July 27th. That win also came against the Yankees.
Description: The Rays have signed Delmon Young to a minor league contract and assigned him to Double-A Montgomery.
Insight: The Phillies released Young after he hit .261 with eight homers and a .699 OPS in 272 at-bats, and now he'll return to the organization that drafted him first overall in 2003. He hasn't had fantasy value since 2010.
Description: Rays left-hander Matt Moore threw 69 pitches during a bullpen session Wednesday and had no issues, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. Moore will throw a simulated game Saturday.
Insight: Moore was initially expected to return last weekend, but he felt discomfort in his elbow when throwing his changeup during a bullpen session last week. He threw his changeup Wednesday, though, without an issue. Moore is hoping to return before the end of August.
Description: Rays left-hander Matt Moore said Tuesday after playing catch that there has been "very significant" progress the last few days with his sore elbow, according ot Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Insight: Moore was initially expected to return last weekend, but he felt discomfort in his elbow when throwing his changeup during a bullpen session last week. He'll throw his latest bullpen session Wednesday and is hoping to return during the team's upcoming West Coast trip near the end of August.
Description: Rays third baseman Evan Longoria is 9-for-21 (.429) with three homers and a 1.452 OPS against Orioles right-hander Chris Tillman.
Insight: Longoria has been on fire the past six games, batting .409. Add in a favorable matchup and he's a must start on Monday. We liked Longoria more in his early years when he stole a few bases, but he should end the season with 30 plus homers and close to 90 RBI.
Description: Rays starter Chris Archer had his best outing of the month Sunday against the Blue Jays.
Insight: Archer left his start on Aug. 7 with forearm tightness and gave up five runs on nine hits over five innings on Aug. 13 against Seattle, but he fired seven innings, gave up four hits and one run, didn't walk a batter and struck out five in a no decision Sunday.
Description: Rays third baseman Evan Longoria's season has gone into the tank after his plantar fasciitis worsened in late June.
Insight: Since June 23, Longoria is hitting .212 with seven homers, 18 RBI and an OPS south of .700. Things seem to be looking up, however -- he has gone 8-for-18 with four doubles and two homers over his last five games after going 23-for-130 (.177) with just two multi-hit games from July 3 to Aug. 13.
Description: According to Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times, Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings (finger) took batting practice Friday for the first time since he fractured his finger and felt some pain.
Insight: Jennings suffered a small fracture of his left middle finger when he jammed his hand into second base on Aug. 3. Jennings said he hopes to come off the disabled list when eligible Monday.
Description: The Rays are hoping Matt Moore (elbow) will be able to return to the rotation by next weekend, according to TampaBay.com.
Insight: Moore was initially expected to return this weekend, but he felt discomfort in his elbow when throwing his changeup during a bullpen session Wednesday. The Rays are confident it wasn't a major setback, however. Tampa Bay will reevaluate Moore after he plays catch Sunday.
Description: Tampa Bay right fielder Wil Myers hit home run No. 9 Wednesday against the Mariners.
Insight: Myers belted a two-run shot in the sixth inning off Aaron Harang. The outfielder has predictably cooled off a bit in August after hitting .352 with a .963 OPS in July, but he still has big-time power potential.
Description: Rays starter Matt Moore (elbow) will not return to the rotation Saturday, according to Roger Mooney of the Tampa Tribune.
Insight: Moore will throw a pen session Sunday and then will be reevaluated. The Rays said he didn't suffer a setback, but that they are being cautious because Moore is still feeling some soreness when he throws a changeup.
Description: Rays pitcher Alex Cobb (concussion, blister) is expected to be activated from the 60-day disabled list for Thursday's scheduled start against Seattle
Insight: Cobb hasn't made a major league start since taking a liner off his head on June 15. he's posted excellent numbers this season - 6-2, 3.01 ERA, 1.159 WHIP and fantasy owners hope he picks up right where he left off.
Description: Jeremy Hellickson's slump continued Sunday versus the Dodgers.
Insight: The Dodgers pummeled Hellickson on Sunday, going off for seven hits and four runs in his three innings of work. Assuming Los Angeles holds on to its 8-1 lead, Hellickson will drop to 0-3 in his last three outings. Over that stretch he has an ERA north of nine (9.75).
Description: Tampa Bay has released righthander Kyle Farnsworth.
Insight: Farnsworth was DFA'd on Friday. He wasn't having a very good season for the Rays. In 39 appearances, Farnsworth went 2-0 with a 5.79 ERA, his worst ERA since 2002 when he played for the Cubs. Opponents are hitting .306 versus Farnsworth in 2013.
Description: Rays righthander Chris Archer says he's no longer feeling tightness in his forearm. SOURCE: Marc Topkin, Tampa Bay Times
Insight: He'll make his scheduled start Tuesday against Seattle. Archer left his last start early but apparently the injury was nothing serious. The 24-year-old is 2-1 with a 2.19 ERA since the All-Star break.
Description: Tampa Bay starter Chris Archer left Wednesday's game against Arizona with right forearm tightness, the team announced.
Insight: That's bad news, as forearm tightness is often indicative of an elbow issue. Archer was both the AL Rookie of the Month and the AL Pitcher of the Month for July and had gone 5-1 with a 1.80 ERA in his last eight starts prior to Wednesday.
Description: According to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times, Rays manager Joe Maddon said that he expects Desmond Jennings (finger) to return around the time he's first eligible to come off the DL.
Insight: Jennings suffered a small fracture of his left middle finger when he jammed his hand into second base Saturday. Jason Bourgeois and Sam Fuld will split time in center field while Jennings is sidelined.
Description: According to CBSSports.com, Rays center fielder Desmond Jennings has a fracture in his left middle finger.
Insight: Jennings has been placed on the 15-day DL. The outfielder suffered the injury when he jammed his finger into second base Saturday. His initial X-rays came back negative, but a follow-up test revealed a small fracture that will keep him out indefinitely. Jason Bourgeois and Sam Fuld will split time in center field while Jennings is sidelined.
Description: X-rays on Desmond Jennings' finger came back negative. SOURCE: Tampa Tribune
Insight: That's a relief, though it doesn't mean he's out of the woods just yet. The Rays outfielder is dealing with the same injury as Carlos Gonzalez, who is expected to be placed on the DL later this week. Jennings' sprained finger may not be as severe as the one Gonzalez has but he's still likely to miss some games.
Description: Tampa Bay left fielder Desmond Jennings is not in Sunday's starting lineup versus San Francisco.
Insight: Jennings has been dealing with a sprained finger on his left hand. He is batting .258 with 11 HR, 40 RBI, 69 runs and 17 stolen bases. One sore point is he leads the league in caught stealing.
Description: According to Roger Mooney of the Tampa Tribune, Rays lefty Matt Moore's MRI revealed no structural damage in his left elbow.
Insight: Phew. Moore felt soreness in his left elbow during his last start, in which he allowed five runs in five innings at New York, and he was placed on the disabled list Wednesday. He's 14-3 with a 3.41 ERA this season. The lefty said he's not worried about the injury.
Description: According to Roger Mooney of the Tampa Tribune, Rays lefty Matt Moore has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with elbow soreness.
Insight: Moore felt soreness in his left elbow during his last start, in which he allowed five runs in five innings at New York. He's 14-3 with a 3.41 ERA this season, so an extended absence would be bad news for fantasy owners.
Description: According to Roger Mooney of the Tampa Tribune, Rays pitcher Alex Cobb (concussion, blister) said his simulated game went well Tuesday.
Insight: Cobb, who hasn't pitched since taking a liner off his head on June 15, exited his first rehab start last week with a blister on his right index finger. He said the blister is healing and expects to pitch Saturday for Class-A Charlotte.