The Rays have taken batting practice against a female high school knuckleballer. Evan Longoria, Jose Molina and David Price hit against 17-year-old Chelsea Baker from Durant High School in nearby Plant City, Fla. Manager Joe Maddon met Baker recently at an awards ceremony and invited her to Tropicana Field. Maddon said the junior who plays on her school’s baseball team was outstanding and has a knuckleball that “moves nicely.” Baker displayed good control, but did hit Longoria in the back with a pitch. Molina swung and missed a couple of times, and Price hit a hard line drive up the middle. Baker says the late major league knuckleballer Joe Niekro taught her to throw the fluttering pitch about 10 years ago.
Jake Peavy’s slide continued, and he may have lost a spot in the rotation. With Clay Buchholz coming off the DL and Brandon Workman returning to the rotation following a suspension, Peavy could have run out of time to find a solution to his problems. “It’s not fun. There is nothing fun about getting beat, especially when you don’t do your job and get beat,” Peavy (1-6) said. “It’s frustrating and there is no other way to say it.”
LHP CC Sabathia (right knee) will throw a 35-pitch session at the team’s spring training facility in Tampa. Sabathia is 3-4 with a 5.28 ERA this season, with opponents hitting .301 off him. New York is also missing two other injured starters — Ivan Nova (season-ending elbow surgery) and Michael Pineda (right shoulder muscle). … The recorded voice of late public address announcer Bob Sheppard welcomed fans to Old-Timers’ Day last week. Yogi Berra and Whitey Ford, both in their 80s, waved from a golf cart and received standing ovations. Hall of Fame reliever Goose Gossage was honored with a plaque to be put in Monument Park.
Compiled by Rick Crotts from wire reports.