Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rays journal: Archer disappointed to be told not to join Team USA in WBC

PORT CHARLOTTE — RHP Chris Archer chose his words carefully, but it was clear he was disappointed to wake up early Sunday to a text telling him not to take his scheduled flight to Los Angeles because he wouldn't be pitching for Team USA in the World Baseball Classic final.

"I don't know what happened other than maybe they think there's a better option," he said. "I don't disagree, I think everybody there is capable of doing something special. But I was definitely looking forward to pitching on the 22nd if necessary."

If anything, that was the problem: Archer could only pitch Wednesday, the day of the championship game. Team USA has Toronto RHP Marcus Stroman to start then. First it has to win a semifinal Tuesday, and Archer was not going to be available then.

As thrilled as Archer was to be part of the WBC experience, he made it clear he was more committed to sticking to the pitching schedule the Rays laid out for him to be ready for opening day.

That was why he came out of the March 10 WBC opener after his four-inning limit, even while being perfect. That was why he left Team USA after Round 1 and rejoined the Rays, so he could pitch as planned March 16 when there was no WBC game. And that was why he was only available Wednesday, which led USA GM Joe Torre to text thanks but no thanks to Archer, creating media speculation team officials were unhappy with him for leaving and not being more flexible.

"The decision was based on Chris' pitching schedule more than anything," Team USA spokesman Rob Butcher said in an e-mail. "Because we can't guarantee we'll be playing on March 22, Joe suggested that if Chris wanted to stay on his scheduled day, he should remain in Florida rather than fly across the country and then maybe not pitch at all."

Archer will be pitching vs. the Orioles in Sarasota and rooting hard for his mates.

"I wanted to pitch there," Archer said. "I had planned on it the entire offseason. We have talked about it since February. There were three days I was able to throw."

More WBC

RHP Jake Odorizzi was not asked to join Team USA; Giants closer Mark Melancon was. … With the Dominicans out, RHPs Alex Colome and Jumbo Diaz are expected to rejoin the Rays this week; manager Kevin Cash hopes to see them today. … LHP Jose Alvarado, who pitched for Venezuela, is headed back and will be optioned to the minors.

Don't see it every day

INF Nick Franklin provided some rare spring fireworks, getting ejected after a strike three call by ump Ryan Blakney. Franklin said he asked about strike one being low and Blakney disagreed "with an exclamation point" then said, "Keep taking it, see what happens." So after strike three Franklin fired back with some choice words but didn't get his full say: "(Manager Kevin) Cash cut me short a little bit. I wish he would've walked out a little slower."

Game report: Rays beat Phillies 8-0

For the second time this spring, the Rays (11-9-2) lost a perfect game in the eighth, RHP Danny Farquhar allowing a one-out double to Tommy Joseph. … OF/DH Colby Rasmus, coming off hip and core muscle surgery, said he felt good after his debut, striking out three times, and expects to DH again today. … LHP Justin Marks, who can start or relieve, retired the first nine, extending his spring scoreless streak to 10 innings over six games. "He's going to help us, I don't know when," manager Kevin Cash said. … 1B Rickie Weeks and SS Tim Beckham both had several outstanding defensive plays.

Spring things

. No. 2 starter RHP Jake Odorizzi will throw in a minor-league game today as No. 4 starter LHP Blake Snell faces the Pirates.

. 3B Evan Longoria was scratched from the lineup due to a stiff neck.

Rays journal: Archer disappointed to be told not to join Team USA in WBC 03/19/17 [Last modified: Monday, March 20, 2017 11:10am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. NFL rewards Tampa Bay's track record, preparation with another Super Bowl

    Bucs

    Tampa Bay got lucky on Tuesday.

    We are getting a Super Bowl. We are getting a Super Bowl that we weren't supposed to get. We're getting a Super Bowl that we once were told we wouldn't get.

    Then came good luck.

    Mike Tomlin celebrates with LaMarr Woodley and Troy Polamalu after the Steelers beat the Cardinals in 


Super Bowl XLIII  on February 1, 2009 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. [Times files (2009)
  2. Rays vs. Angels, 7:10 p.m. Wednesday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Angels

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    PORT CHARLOTTE, FL - FEBRUARY 18:  Erasmo Ramirez #30 of the Tampa Bay Rays poses for a portrait during the Tampa Bay Rays photo day on February 18, 2017 at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, Floida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
  3. Wilson Ramos feeling good and confident, eyeing late June return to Rays

    Blogs

    Sitting on the bench in the Rays dugout in his full catcher's gear, Wilson Ramos talked excitedly Tuesday about the progress in his recovery from right knee surgery and the potential to be back in the major leagues by this time next month.

    "I feel like a player right now,'' Ramos said.

    Wilson Ramos is aiming to be back with the Rays by this time next month.
  4. Tampa lands Super Bowl in 2021

    Bucs

    TAMPA — Record rainfall in Los Angeles ultimately may end Tampa Bay's drought of hosting the Super Bowl.

    Mike Tomlin celebrates with LaMarr Woodley and Troy Polamalu after the Steelers beat the Cardinals in 


Super Bowl XLIII  on February 1, 2009 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. [Times files (2009)
  5. Why Ryan Fitzpatrick may solve the puzzle for Bucs at backup quarterback

    Blogs

    Ryan Fitzpatrick will have to leave One Buc Place following Thursday’s off-season workout and fly home to New Jersey in time to teach a class of 10 second and third grade students how to solve the Rubiks Cube.

    The Bucs are hoping Ryan Fitzpatrick can provide the solution to their puzzle at backup quarterback behind starter Jameis Winston.