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Rays

Moore gets boost from Molina

Staff
Published:   |   Updated: March 19, 2013 at 02:04 AM
BRADENTON -

RHP Matt Moore turned in his longest outing of the spring Friday in a 3-3 tie against the Pirates at McKechnie Field.

The rookie allowed three hits and a run, struck out three and walked one in six innings. He threw 88 pitches (56 strikes), two shy of his goal for the hot afternoon.

"I definitely needed to get 90 pitches out of my body," Moore said. "We fell behind some hitters, but we were able to get to six innings, get up and down six times, and getting (88) pitches, so it was nice."

C Jose Molina said he was impressed with Moore's day, though the veteran catcher wasn't thrilled with Moore's first-inning effort.

Molina said he didn't feel Moore was pushing himself hard enough in the first. Molina told Moore he had to give the same effort Friday as he would during a regular-season game. After that, Molina said, Moore was fine.

"He picked it up," Molina said. "He pitched real well."

Moore's next start will be in Wednesday's game against select minor-leaguers from the organization at Tropicana Field. He hopes to have command of his fastball by then. Moore said he fell behind too many hitters Friday.

"I think a little bit of it is slowing down and realizing what I am doing when the ball is not going there instead of just thinking I know it, I know that I got to get on top of it more," he said. "It's more sideline work more than anything."

Moore said he doesn't see the lack of command as an issue, just something he wants to iron out before the regular season.

"It's not something that I'm nervous about," Moore said. "The ball is going to find its place, where it's going more times than not."

Bush removed from roster

The Rays announced Friday that minor-league pitcher Matt Bush was placed on the restricted list and removed from the active roster and the 40-man roster, the first step in releasing him from the organization.

Executive vice president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said Sunday that Bush won't play for the Rays after his alleged involvement in a DUI hit-and-run with injury that has left Tony Tufano, 72, of Port Charlotte, in critical condition with multiple fractures to his ribs and arms. He remains in a medically induced coma.

Bush remains in the Charlotte County Jail on $1.015 million bail, facing seven charges for allegedly striking Tufano's motorcycle while driving an SUV.

Niemann scratched

RHP Jeff Niemann was scratched from today's start against the visiting Red Sox because of a blister on a finger of his pitching hand.

Rays manager Joe Maddon said it is not serious, and that Niemann being scratched is an attempt to not make the blister more of an issue.

RHP Kyle Farnsworth will start today, leading a parade of relievers against the Red Sox.

Noteworthy

DH Luke Scott beat the Pirates' over-shift to the right side of the infield in the fourth inning by lining a single into right field. It was the Rays' first hit of the game. … Molina drove in all three of the Rays' runs with a two-out double to right-center in the seventh inning. … Tickets for Wednesday's game at the Trop are $10. Fans can sit anywhere in the lower bowl except the Avantar Home Plate Club. Parking on stadium lots is $10. … LHP David Price's Bowl for Kids Sake Fundraiser raised $22,000 for Big Brothers Big Sisters. … The Rays finished the spring 4-0-1 against the Pirates.

Roger Mooney

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