Cash calls on pitchers to step up Kevin Cash told reporters prior to Friday's 4-1 loss to the Pirates that he would like to see the Rays' pitchers kick it into another gear.
"I think the entire pitching staff, we can probably step on the gas a little more and start seeing guys building up and getting closer to where they're going to be on Opening Day," the Rays manager said. "I know it's March 10, but we've also been here a month."
The gist of Cash's message was that the pitchers need to start competing, rather than just workng themselves into pitching shape.
Archer gets the nod Chris Archer started for Team USA on Friday night against Colombia. Cash said he texted the Rays right-hander beforehand.
"I'm excited for him," Cash said. "What an opportunity to go and represent Major League Baseball, and us, and also Team USA."
Rasmus making progress Colby Rasmus has not yet played, but he has taken batting practice. Said Cash: "He's looked really good taking batting practice. We'd like to get him out on the field, but we're still not in that rushed zone yet."
Rasmus is still taking things slow in his recovery from offseason surgeries to repair his hip and a sports hernia.
This and that • Cash called right-hander Diego Moreno "a guy we're really intrigued with."
"We like his demeanor out on the mound," Cash said. "Doesn't seem to get fazed too much. He has a pretty good idea about what he wants to accomplish. He seems very calm. He's done a really good job."
Moreno got the win against the Rays while pitching for Colombia on Wednesday night -- wearing a Rays uniform.
• Cash was asked to assess his bullpen and how many jobs he felt were available.
"I don't know," he said. "There's opportunity. There's probably two or three spots guys are competing for. Some have maybe better chances than others. But nothing's been defined. That's for sure."
Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005.