Roger Mooney covers the Tampa Bay Rays for The Tampa Tribune, TBO.com and News Channel 8. He has covered the Rays since their first season in 1998, including 11 years for the Bradenton Herald. Roger has also covered Florida, South Florida and Florida State football, the Bucs and the Lightning.
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Kotchman among 7 sent back to minor league camp
Posted Mar 26, 2011 by Roger Mooney
Updated Mar 26, 2011 at 01:31 PM
BY ROGER MOONEY
PORT CHARLOTTE – The Rays trimmed their roster some more just before today’s game, sending seven players to minor league camp.
They are: 1B Casey Kotchman, INFs Felipe Lopez and Ray Olmedo, C Craig Albernaz and OFs Joe Inglett, Chris Carter and Justin Ruggiano.
None of the cuts are surprises since all seven were in camp on minor league contracts.
Dan Johnson is the Rays first baseman. That left no room for Kotchman, since both are left-handed hitters and the Rays do not have any room on the roster for a second first baseman.
Also, Kotchman is not on the 40-man roster, so the Rays would have had to clear room on the 40-man for Kotchman.
The Seminole native has worked on his hitting this spring. This allows Kotchman to continue making strides at the plate by playing every day for Durham rather than serving as a late-inning defensive replacement with the odd at-bat for the Rays.
Cutting Lopez means Elliot Johnson has made the team.
Sam Fuld has made the team as the backup outfielder.
There are 28 players left in camp.