Tag:Jeff Niemann
Posted on: March 15, 2011 10:14 pm

Price named Rays' opening day starter

By C. Trent Rosecrans

David PriceMany of the opening day starting assignments are far from surprising, but they're still newsworthy just because, well, they are. Today's starter announcement is one of those. David Price will start for the Rays when they open the season April 1 against the Orioles.

Price has disposed James Shields at the top of the rotation, and understandably so. The former No. 1 pick was 19-6 with a 2.72 ERA last season in his first full season in the big leagues. Shields, though, struggled last season, going 13-15 with a 5.18 ERA and led the big leagues in hits (246) and earned runs (117) allowed.

Price said Shields was the first person to congratulate him on the news.

"He earned it, just like I earned it," Shields told the Tampa Tribune. "I'm happy for him. He had an unbelievable year last year."

Manager Joe Maddon said the rotation will also include Shields, Jeff Niemann, Wade Davis and Jeremy Hellickson, although the order won't be set until later. Maddon wants to see how each pitcher matches up with the team's first few opponents before announcing it.

"We have some ideas, I'm not ready to reveal them yet," Maddon said. "We're still talking about it. It's not brain surgery. It just makes sense some of the stuff."

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Posted on: December 19, 2010 7:11 pm
Edited on: December 19, 2010 7:12 pm

Rays building bullpen in crazy market

PeraltaIn an offseason where the Rays have had to build up an entire bullpen from the ground up, Tampa has instead been left on the inside looking in as the relief market has exploded.

"It's been," GM Andrew Friedman told the St. Petersburg Times, "a very good offseason to be a reliever."

With all the three-year deals flying around, Friedman has had to adjust his expectations and as a result has brought in small names in former Nats reliever Joel Peralta (pictured), drafting Red Sox left-hander Cesar Cabral in the Rule 5 draft and trading for Adam Russell, Cesar Ramos and Brandon Gomes from the Padres in the Jason Bartlett deal.

So yeah, there's a bullpen -- but not one long on quality or recognizable names.

"It's not something we anticipated," Friedman said. "Especially in an offseason when we needed to remake our bullpen, it's not necessarily ideal. But you have to react accordingly and do what you can."

The club also expects J.P. Howell to return from Tommy John surgery at some point, although not likely by Opening Day. Howell likely would have been set up to close if the timetable afforded enough time in spring training. As is, Peralta is set to be the closer. That's rather odd for someone non-tendered by the Nationals, although the non-tender decision was curious given the 34-year-old posted a 2.02 ERA in 49 innings, whiffing 49 and walking a scant nine.

Other possibilities for the pen include converting a starter into a reliever such as Jeff Niemann or promoting prospect Jake McGee and Jeremy Hellickson and pitching them out of the bullpen. 

Tampa also has minor-league invites to camp for R.J. Swindle and Cory Wade and figure to extend a few more minor-league deals to willing pitchers.

-- Evan Brunell

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Posted on: October 4, 2010 3:37 pm

Rays announce ALDS rotation

The Rays have announced their rotation against the Rangers:

Game 1: David Price
Game 2: James Shields
Game 3: Matt Garza
Game 4. Wade Davis
Game 5: Price

According to Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times (via Twitter ), the Rays won't announce the rest of their roster until Tuesday at the earliest. He expects Jeff Niemann in the bullpen.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: September 15, 2010 6:49 pm

Rays shuffle rotation to get Price-Sabathia II

David Price We'll get another Cy Young matchup next week (you know between "winners" not merely one of those guys pitching better than anyone else ) as the Rays have juggled their rotation to set up a David Price vs. CC Sabathia showdown on Thursday in the finale of the four-game series at Yankee Stadium.

Price will start Saturday against the Angels, with Jeff Niemann going Sunday to make sure Price will get a chance to pitch against the Yankees in a rematch of Monday's 1-0 showdown.

"We've been kind of taking care of him and we feel pretty good where he's at, innings and pitches, right now," Rays manager Joe Maddon told the Tampa Tribune . "It just seemed like the prudent thing to do. We normally don't do those things. But it's not like we're not flexible. We're going to try to what we think is the right thing to do at a particular moment."

Price said he knew about the move for a couple of days and was thrilled to face the Yankees again.

"I get to face New York again, so that's fun," Price said. "I'll have another go around in New York. My last one wasn't so hot."

Price went eight innings, allowing three hits and no runs against Sabathia on Monday at home, but last time in New York he gave up seven hits and seven runs in five innings on July 18.

The move would also put Price on the mound for the final day of the season in Kansas City if the Rays need that game for playoff seeding.

 -- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: August 9, 2010 2:16 pm

Hellickson rejoins Rays

Jeremy Hellickson Well, that was quick.

Top Rays prospect Jeremy Hellickson impressed in his major-league debut last Monday to beat Minnesota, Hellickson was shipped back to Triple-A.

However, with both Wade Davis and Jeff Niemann beset by shoulder comfort, Hellickson skipped his start Sunday and is headed to Detroit where he will toe the mound on Tuesday, reports the Durham Herald-Sun .

That means one of Davis and Niemann -- if not both -- are headed to the disabled list. It's likely Davis, who was slated to go Tuesday, although he may simply be pushed back in the rotation.

Unfortunately for Davis, his chase at double-digit wins in his first full season will have to wait.
-- Evan Brunell

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Posted on: August 7, 2010 7:32 pm

Rays' Niemann scratched with sore shoulder

Jeff Niemann
Sounds like it's just a precaution and not -- at this point -- cause for concern, but the Rays scratched right-hander Jeff Niemann from his scheduled start Sunday because of shoulder soreness he's felt since his last start.

"It's just been sore," Niemann told MLB.com. "It's been getting significantly better each day, and it's at a point where I'd rather take the improvements I've made these past few days and not go out and push it and fall back to square one."

Manager Joe Maddon said he's seen a recent decrease in the 27-year-old's command. Niemann might just need a rest -- he's on pace to throw 205 innings in his second big-league season. The Rays can ill-afford to lose Niemann (10-3 with a 3.12 ERA, second-lowest among Rays starters) down the stretch.

Starting in Niemann's place Sunday will be Andy Sonnanstine, who has been on the disabled list with a hamstring strain and was activated Saturday. It will be the first start of the year for Sonnanstine, who has made 30 appearances with a 4.22 ERA and a WHIP of 1.184.

-- David Andriesen

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Category: MLB
Posted on: June 8, 2010 10:51 pm
Edited on: October 19, 2010 11:19 am

Stephen who? Niemann throws 2-hitter

Continuing the trend of everything on June 8, 2010, mentioning Stephen Strasburg, Tampa Bay's Jeff Neimann threw a better game than Strasburg.

Niemann threw a two-hit complete game, striking out six against the Blue Jays.

Still, even Niemann couldn't avoid Strasburg.

"There was a little buzz going aroudn the dugout," Niemmann said on MLB Network. "I heard he put on a show."

What he didn't say was he needed just 114 pitches to throw nine innings -- take that Strasburg and your 94 pitches in seven.

Niemann is 6-0, while Strasburg is a measly 1-0.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com