BALTIMORE -- Nate Lowe has gotten off to a good start with the Rays. The first baseman, Tampa Bay's No. 8 prospect per MLB Pipeline, went into Saturday hitting .263 in five games.
Lowe went 0-for-4 in the Rays' 3-0 loss to the Orioles as the cleanup hitter, but Rays manager Kevin Cash likes the way Lowe has looked at the plate in his first stint in the Majors.
“He’s come up; he’s had polished at-bats,” Cash said. “Certainly doesn’t look overmatched. Certainly doesn’t look over-anxious at the plate.”
Lowe is 5-for-23 with six strikeouts, two runs and one RBI, which came in Friday’s 7-0 victory over the Orioles on a sacrifice fly in the sixth.
Cash would like to see if Lowe can go on the kind of a run that would give the Rays’ offense an early season boost.
“Anytime that you’re a young player, you come up and can kind of get a little momentum going, which he’s done,” Cash said. “Seems like good things to come, like he might just go off here soon. I think he’s totally capable of getting really hot.”
On the rehab front, Matt Duffy did well in his first day with Class A Advanced Charlotte on Friday. Duffy, who has been out all season due to left hamstring tightness, went 0-for-3 while playing third base and came through everything fine.
“Good day, three at-bats,” Cash said. “Got down the line fine. Two defensive plays at third base [and] looked good. [He] came in today, felt very good.”
Cash said Duffy would be off Saturday and play again Sunday, although he wasn't sure if it would be in the field or as a designated hitter.
José De León started for Charlotte on Saturday night as he continued working his way back from Tommy John surgery. The right-hander pitched 1 2/3 innings and allowed three runs, two earned, on two hits and two walks. It marked the first time he had pitched professionally since Aug. 9, 2017. Cash said it will take some time to build him back up.
Cash also said that outfielder Austin Meadows (right thumb strain) had another good day of work. He's expected to work out with the Rays after they return to town on Monday.