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Hellickson To Pitch As Rays Take On Pirates

Today, Jeremy Hellickson will make his first game appearance of Spring Training, pitching one inning in relief against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Hellickson was sidelined with a hamstring injury early in Spring Training, and the Rays have taken their time to ease their top prospect back.

Considering that the Rays have an extra off-day during the first week of the season, they do not need their fifth starter until their ninth regular season game. This means that Hellickson could begin the season on the Disabled List, which would allow him to have a full Spring Training without missing any regular season starts.

Manny Ramirez is hitting lead-off today, as Maddon wants to get Ramirez his at bats early in the game.

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Who: Pittsburgh Pirates @ Tampa Bay Rays

When & Where: 1:05 PMCharlotte Sports Park, Charlotte County, Fla.

Radio: RaysBaseball.com

Pitching for the Rays: Wade Davis, Jeremy Hellickson, Kyle Farnsworth, Joel Peralta, Adam Russell, Alex Cobb

Pitching for the Pirates: James McDonald, Brian Burres, Daniel Moskos, Justin Thomas, Chris Leroux

Rays Lineup: Courtesy of Marc Topkin:

Ramirez dh
Rodriguez 2b
Kotchman 1b
Shoppach c
Lopez 3b
Johnson ss
Jennings cf
Fuld lf
Vogt rf 

Photographs by cstreet.us, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.