Blog Entry

Rays put Wade Davis on DL

Posted on: July 7, 2011 7:34 pm
Edited on: July 7, 2011 7:52 pm
 
NEW YORK -- The Rays, who Thursday night began an 11-game stretch that could define their season, will go through it a man short in their excellent starting rotation, after Wade Davis went on the disabled list with a strained right forearm.

Manager Joe Maddon said that the news on Davis wasn't all bad -- an MRI on his right elbow came back clean, and the team believes he should only miss one or two starts. Maddon said that the injury has kept Davis from being able to throw his slider in his last two starts.

"It'd be nice to get his slider back," Maddon said.

Davis allowed four runs in five innings in the Rays' 12-5 loss to the Twins on Wednesday, so he wasn't going to pitch again before the break, anyway. But now he'll also likely miss the first two series after the break, when the Rays have a seven-game homestand against the Red Sox and Yankees.

The Rays have stayed reasonably close in the American League East (they began Thursday's game against the Yankees four games behind New York and 3 1/2 behind the Red Sox), but their second-half schedule is heavy on games against the two teams in front of them. That's either good (because head-to-head matchups give them an opportunity to make up ground) or bad (because the Yankees and Red Sox are the two toughest opponents in the league).

By the time they finish this round of 11 games against the Yankees and Red Sox, the Rays figure to have a much better idea of whether they have a realistic chance of catching one of the two teams in front. If so, they'll no doubt go for it and even look to add help at the July 31 deadline.

If not, the Rays could well sell, with enigmatic center fielder B.J. Upton atop the list of those who would be made available. Outfield is a position of strength in the Tampa Bay organization, and Upton is getting to the point where he will be expensive for what he is delivering.

The Rays called up reliever Brandon Gomes to take Davis' roster spot. They'll make another move to add a starting pitcher when they need one after the All-Star break.


Category: MLB
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