Last mission to repair the Hubble telescope Hubble space telescope discoveries have enriched our understanding of the cosmos. In this special report, you will see facts about the Hubble space telescope, discoveries it has made and what the last mission's goals are.
For their own good
Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
Fill out this form to email this article to a friend
Team eyes Longoria for third base in spring, sliding Iwamura over
By MARC TOPKIN, Times Staff Writer
Published September 27, 2007
[James Borchuck | Times]
Evan Longoria hit a combined .299 with 26 homers and 95 RBIs between Double-A Montgomery and Triple-A Durham. In 198 pro games, he has a .304 average, 44 homers and 153 RBIs.
ST. PETERSBURG - OF Ryan Royster and RHP Wade Davis were honored Wednesday as the Rays' minor-leaguers of the year, but 3B Evan Longoria has earned the better prize - a legitimate shot to make the majors in the spring.
Manager Joe Maddon said there was a "50-50" chance Longoria, the Rays' top pick in the 2006 draft, could be the starting third baseman on opening day. And it sounded like there was no doubt he'd be there at some point next season, with the more pressing question whether it's better for his development to start the year in the majors or come up after a couple of months.
Longoria, 21, said he "definitely" could handle the assignment and welcomes the chance to prove it.
"Having Triple-A experience this year and playing with a lot of guys who've been in the big leagues gives you that feeling that you can play here," he said.
Longoria hit a combined .299 with 26 homers and 95 RBIs between Double-A Montgomery and Triple-A Durham. In 198 pro games, he has a .304 average, 44 homers and 153 RBIs.
Maddon said Rays officials hope to have a pretty good idea of their plans before spring training so the decision isn't made on how well or poorly Longoria does. They are confident enough, though, that they plan to have current 3B Akinori Iwamura spend most of the spring at second base preparing for a move.
SPECIAL K: Scott Kazmir is scheduled to make his last start tonight with a chance for two milestones - he can tie Rolando Arrojo's 1998 franchise record of 14 victories, and he is six strikeouts behind Minnesota's Johan Santana (235) for the AL lead. Kazmir caught a break Wednesday when Santana struck out four in Detroit and didn't return after the game was delayed by rain.
JOBS WELL DONE: Royster led all Rays minor-leaguers with a .329 average, 30 homers and 98 RBIs for Class A South Atlantic League champion Columbus.
Davis, who emerged as their top young pitching prospect, went a combined 10-3 with a 2.50 ERA at Class A Vero Beach and Double-A Southern League champion Montgomery, with 169 strikeouts in 158 innings.
The Rays also honored the top player and pitcher at each minor-league level: Durham, OF Justin Ruggiano and Jeff Niemann (a Wednesday no-show); Montgomery, Longoria and Chris Mason; Vero, 1B Rhyne Hughes and Jake McGee; Columbus, OF Desmond Jennings and Heath Rollins; Class A Hudson Valley, OF Emeel Salem and Alex Cobb; rookie-level Princeton, INF Omar Luna and Jeremy Hall; Dominican league, OF Ramon Novas and Juan Santana; Venezuelan league, OF Julio Cedeno and Omar Bencomo.
ANOTHER HONOR: Class A Vero's Pat Cottrell won the first Erik Walker Community Champion Award recognizing a minor-leaguer who exemplifies teamwork, sportsmanship and community involvement. The award is named for the minor-leaguer who died in October; Cottrell gets a $2,500 check for charity.
SIGNS OF THE TIMES: Yankees C Jorge Posada was concerned enough during Tuesday's game to wag his finger at Jonny Gomes for supposedly relaying signs from second base to Rays hitters. But Wednesday, Posada said "there's nothing to talk about" and that "it's baseball." Gomes said it may have looked bad because he was repeatedly touching his helmet (which is covered with pine tar) but he was "definitely not" relaying signs.
MISCELLANY: After drawing 21,621 Wednesday, the Rays need 10,310 tonight to top last year's attendance. ... Yankees starters had gone 110 innings without giving up a homer. ... SS Josh Wilson extended his hitless streak to 0-for-34. ... The Yanks lead the season series 9-8. ... 2B Brendan Harris (strained left lat muscle) remains limited to pinch-running and defense but hopes to start during the final series. ... The Rays will announce a new "community partnership" at 11 a.m. today at St. Petersburg City Hall with Iwamura on hand.
How the Rays stand in avoiding the worst record in the majors: