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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Rays-Rangers Wed. lineups
Posted Apr 11, 2007 by Marc Lancaster
Updated Apr 11, 2007 at 07:18 PM
ARLINGTON, Texas - Beautiful day here, just in time to head into the Minnesota snow. Little lineup flip for the Rays today.
Following up on the Crawford-Baldelli swap, Joe Maddon said he thought tonight would be a good time to try it, maybe break some of the negative momentum from the past few days. He said he wouldn’t have done it if Rocco hadn’t been moving around so well on his hamstring. Still, look for Rocco to DH two of the games in Minnesota.
“Neither one came to me and talked about it,” said Maddon. “This is just an observation on my part based on last year. I thought Rocco did a nice job leading off and I thought Carl did a nice job hitting behind him. Coming into this camp, I was concerned that after they both hit, the drop-off was rather dramatic. But right now, it appears as though the lineup has balanced itself out pretty nicely, so it’s more comfortable to do this right now.”
Elijah Dukes, who started six of the first seven games, is just getting a night off and will be in center field tomorrow.
Also—talked to Jonny Gomes and he was extremely upbeat despite his reduced role. He said he hasn’t worked this hard in a long time as far as doing extra hitting and conditioning work, and there was no need for Maddon or anyone else to reassure him that he would get some playing time eventually.
“I don’t think they need to tell me anything,” said Gomes. “He writes the lineup and that’s just it. I’m a grown man, I don’t need a pat on the back or anything. He’s the boss. It seems to be working out fine – the boys are hitting.”