Opener, Snell then Morton to get ball vs. Yanks

May 15th, 2019

MIAMI -- The Rays set their pitching plans as they look to avenge last weekend's home series loss to the Yankees when they travel to New York for a three-game set this weekend at Yankee Stadium.

Tampa Bay will likely have an opener starting on Friday, with scheduled to get the bulk of the innings. is scheduled for Saturday, with rounding things out by pitching on Sunday.

Chirinos picked up his fifth win of the season in Saturday's 7-2 victory over the Yankees, giving up two runs over four innings. Snell struck out 12 over 5 2/3 innings Sunday but picked up the loss in the 7-1 defeat after being outdueled by Masahiro Tanaka. Morton has yet to face the Yankees this season.

The Rays have an off-day on Monday, their fourth in 12 days, before embarking on one of their toughest stretches of the season. They'll play 47 games in 48 days until the All-Star break.

To this point, pitching coach Kyle Snyder and the Rays have looked for ways to have their starters and bulk guys get an extra day of rest whenever the schedule allowed it. But because of the upcoming stretch and the injury to , the Rays will be going with a regular rotation until the middle of July.

“As soon we get past this off-day after the New York series, we’re going to have to be on a regular rotation because our off-days are gone for a while,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “I think Kyle has done such a good job kind of mapping this out until this point, and our pitchers -- our starters and bulk guys -- have been able to benefit from the extra days, but we’ve gotten deep enough in the season that we gotta go.”

Cash also said that he doesn’t foresee naming a third or fourth starter while Glasnow is on the injured list. Chirinos and will be the primary bulk guys moving forward, with being a realistic option to get a callup once the team gets past Monday’s off-day, serving as the team’s third bulk guy and fifth pitching option.

“We’re not going to be able to just buy that extra day here and there without making roster moves,” Cash said. “I think they’re all ready to go on their normal rest.”

Rehab stints
Rays third baseman (left hamstring) played five innings at third base with Class A Advanced Charlotte on Wednesday and went 0-for-2. He's scheduled to play the entire game Thursday as the designated hitter.

(Tommy John surgery) made his third rehab start Wednesday with Triple-A Durham, allowing just two hits and striking out five over three scoreless innings. He threw 48 pitches, 32 for strikes. De Leon is scheduled to have a couple more rehab starts before the team has to decide whether he continues in Durham or gets activated.

Catcher (right oblique) was rehabbing at Tropicana Field on Wednesday, but there’s still no timetable for his return.

First round pick shines in debut
Matthew Liberatore, the Rays' first-round Draft pick in 2018, finished with an impressive stat line in his first start of the season with Class A Bowling Green on Wednesday. The left-hander allowed four hits and struck out four over five innings in the Hot Rods' 17-0 win over the South Bend Cubs. The Rays’ No. 5 prospect per MLB Pipeline and No. 51 overall in baseball had a 1.38 ERA in nine starts in Rookie League ball after being selected with the No. 16 pick in the MLB Draft.