The Rays added a run in the top of the sixth inning with an RBI double by David DeJesus, but the Rangers fought right back in the bottom-half of the frame.
After Elvis Andrus reached on a one-out single and stole second base, Alex Rios delivered a double off the left field wall to cut the Rays’ lead to 4-2. It was just a few feet away from being a two-run homer. You can watch the video below.
The Rangers had a chance for more, but David Price was able to escape by getting Adrian Beltre and A.J. Pierzynski on grounds outs to end the inning. The southpaw is at 86 pitches through six innings while the Rangers are into their bullpen.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.