Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon
news

MLB News

Archer's sights set on 100-pitch mark

Rays' Opening Day starter focused on extending final spring outing before regular season
MLB.com @wwchastain

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Chris Archer made pitching look easy during a 5 1/3-inning stint in a 10-5 Rays win over the Tigers on Sunday afternoon at Charlotte Sports Park.

The Rays' Opening Day starter allowed no runs on two hits while striking out four. He threw 74 pitches, of which 46 were strikes.

View Full Game Coverage

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Chris Archer made pitching look easy during a 5 1/3-inning stint in a 10-5 Rays win over the Tigers on Sunday afternoon at Charlotte Sports Park.

The Rays' Opening Day starter allowed no runs on two hits while striking out four. He threw 74 pitches, of which 46 were strikes.

View Full Game Coverage

"All around today felt like a great progression," said Archer, who does not plan to have a shortened outing before making his Opening Day start against the Red Sox on March 29. "After my last start we talked about being a little more efficient. I was a lot more efficient today, and I was still able to work on some things.

"I was experimenting still and it was good to get the feedback I got. ... Just working on changeups. Different counts: when I'm behind, when I'm ahead, to righties, to lefties. Just continuing to get feedback from big league hitters."

Video: DET@TB: Archer discusses changeup, spring outing

Archer said he planned to continue making the progression to 100 pitches, rather than backing off in his next outing, based on last year's experience.

Spring: Info | Tickets | Schedule | Gear

"Last year, the most I threw was like 5 2/3 [innings] and 88 pitches," Archer said. "And the first game of the season, I was in the seventh inning with the bases loaded with over 100 pitches. And I hadn't been there since the year prior. I wanted to avoid that. I'm giving myself extra rest as opposed to [having an outing where I throw less pitches]. It's kind of give and take. So I am going to increase the volume, but I'm going to have 24 hours more of rest."

Rays manager Kevin Cash was pleased with what Archer showed Sunday.

:: Spring Training coverage presented by Camping World ::

"Got all of his pitches working really well," Cash said.

Archer hopes to to hit 100 pitches in Friday's start, and then he'll have five days' rest before Opening Day.

Andriese plays host
Matt Andriese played host to 10-year-old Joshua on Sunday as part of his involvement with the Pinellas-Pasco Heart Gallery, whose mission is to increase the number of successful adoptions of local children in foster care.

"I'm going to be more involved with it this year, so this is a first step," said Andriese, who said he initially got involved through his agency. "They heard about the Home Run Club, and they do little events before games in different suites for foster care, helping these kids find a perfect home."

Tweet from @RaysBaseball: We���ve got a special guest today. Joshua is 10 and visiting us from @theheartgallery.He���ll be hanging out all day long! pic.twitter.com/tD7UGMsEf0

The Rays' clubhouse staff made up a locker for Joshua next to Andriese, and the youngster was able to shadow the Rays' right-hander throughout the day, even spending time in the Rays' bullpen during the game to see what a day in the Major Leagues was like. Joshua also joined Cash for the pregame meeting with the umpires

"Put a smile on his face," Andriese said. "It was pretty rewarding to see that and just have a good day out here."

Video: Joshua from Heart Gallery spends day with the Rays

Andriese added that he's still learning about the organization.

"I wanted to be more involved in something this year, and this kind of gives me a good opportunity where my wife can help as well," he said. "Hopefully [my involvement] will help with awareness. And it kind of gives us something we can do at home and at the Trop."

Roster reduction
The Rays reduced their Spring Training roster to 36 on Sunday. The team optioned left-hander Anthony Banda and right-hander Ryne Stanek to Minor League camp, and reassigned lefties Kyle Bird and Adam Kolarek, righties Ian Gibaut, Cody Hall and Colton Murray, and catchers Xorge Carrillo and Johnny Monell to Minor League camp.

Video: MIN@TB: Banda escapes jam with double play

Camp battles
Yonny Chirinos, a solid candidate to earn a spot in the bullpen, allowed an earned run on four hits in 1 1/3 innings. His spring ERA is 5.25.

Injury update
Brad Miller (toe injury) played Saturday against the Red Sox and had two doubles in three trips to the plate. Sunday was a scheduled off-day for Miller, but Cash said all was well with Miller.

"I heard all good things," Cash said. "He came up feeling good."

Cash said Miller will play Monday against the Yankees in Tampa.

Up next
The Rays will travel to Tampa on Monday night to face the Yankees in a 6:35 p.m. ET contest. Blake Snell will start for the Rays, and Matt Andriese and Alex Colome are also scheduled to pitch. David Hale will start for the Yankees.

Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2004.

Tampa Bay Rays, Chris Archer