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Tampa Bay Rays notes: Moore can't find command

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Published:   |   Updated: March 18, 2013 at 10:07 PM
FORT MYERS -

Tampa Bay Rays manager Joe Maddon wants to see LHP Matt Moore develop his fastball to the point where he can throw it for a strike any time during the count. That didn't happen Tuesday, when Moore lacked command during this second start of the spring.

Moore threw 49 pitches — 25 of them balls — during his 2 2/3 innings in the Rays' 8-5 win against the Twins at Hammond Stadium.

"It's frustrating, obviously. You want to do well every time you go out there, regardless if it's spring training or a regular game," Maddon said. "But, obviously, I understand that this is the time for us to iron out the kinks and figure things out on this stage."

Moore felt his throwing arm was dragging through the delivery, and to compensate he said he ended up overthrowing his fastball.

"I was fine with the way the ball was coming out of his hand, but certainly not where it was crossing home plate or not crossing home plate," pitching coach Jim Hickey said. "The goal for the day was to kind of have a nice path to home and to have the ball come out of his hand nice and clean, and that would translate into throwing strikes.

"Actually, he did have a decent path to the plate and it came out of his hand OK. He wasn't really yanking or spiking balls, but a little bit disappointing just because of the fact he was behind some hitters. But overall I'm perfectly happy with what transpired for his second spring outing."

Scott update

DH Luke Scott (tight left hamstring) was scheduled to hit and throw Tuesday at Charlotte Sports Park.

"He's doing good. He was spry (Tuesday morning)," Maddon said.

Maddon said he expects Scott to play later this week.

Fuld also ailing

OF Sam Fuld also felt soreness in his right hamstring Sunday while playing against the Twins on a chilly afternoon in Port Charlotte. He did not play Monday or Tuesday.

"Nothing awful, but precautionary," Maddon said.

Fuld said he is day-to-day.

Game stuff

RHP Juan Sandoval pitched a perfect ninth for the save after the Rays rallied for the lead with a five-run eighth inning.

"I love that stuff, man. That's really something," Hickey said. "This guy, every time he goes out there he kind of opens your eyes a little bit more and a little bit more."

Hickey was impressed with Sandoval's ability to attack the bottom of the strike zone with his 94-mph fastball while behind in the count.

"He was throwing 94-mph fastballs kneecap high, but they weren't straight either," Hickey said. "They had late action at the end. So he's an interesting cat for sure."

LF Brandon Guyer doubled home a run, and RF Kevin Kiermaier tripled home two runs in the eighth to give the Rays a 7-5 lead. Guyer stole home in the ninth inning during a first-and-third situation.

Noteworthy

Maddon left for his Tampa home Tuesday at 2 p.m. to prepare for the colonoscopy that he will have this morning. … RHP Kyle Farnsworth threw a bullpen session Tuesday and is scheduled to pitch in his first game Friday against the visiting Phillies. … Today is the first of three off days this spring for the Rays.

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