Rays looking forward to off-day Monday
After 40 games in 41 days, club excited to take a breather
ST. PETERSBURG -- Sunday brought an end to a stretch of the season that saw the Rays play 40 games in 41 days. So Monday will bring a much-needed day off to the team.
Inside the Rays' clubhouse, the players were looking forward to their day off and what they planned to do, including Joe Maddon.
The Rays manager plans to take his wife to the airport then take a bike ride and have a good dinner. He doesn't plan to sleep the day away, though.
"I sleep well anyway," Maddon said. "Primarily, it will be just nice to turn it off and not have to show up at the park one day."
Carl Crawford's plan for Monday is no plan at all.
"I'm just going to relax," Crawford said. "I've played in just about every game, so I'm just going to go home and relax. I probably won't get out of the bed. I can sleep all day. I can literally stay in my bed the whole day, and not move."
J.P. Howell plans to follow suit.
"I'm going to rot, be a couch potato all day," Howell said. "I'm just going to marinate at home and lay low, not do a thing except play a few video games and eat as much as I can."
Lance Cormier went to watch his wife take part in her first triathlon on Sunday in St. Petersburg, so he planned to do a little pampering come Monday.
"She'll be able to have a recovery day, then we have a baby sitter [for their son]," Cormier said. "We have a date."
Carlos Pena plans to go to the beach.
"[I'm going to] just spend a lot of time with the family," Pena said. "Spend as much time as I can with my daughter, see if my wife can get out and have a spa day, because she's with our daughter all the time. So I'll take over and spend some time with our daughter."
Pena believes his plan is suitable for everyone.
"I need time with my daughter, it's perfect for me to take over and say, 'Babe, go to the spa today and give yourself a relaxing two hours and I'll stay with Isabella,'" he said. "That will be fine with me, because I need time with her. So it just works out perfect. She gets to rest a little bit and I get to spend time with her and enjoy myself at the same time, because it's truly enjoyable to me."
Maddon thinks his team has earned a day off.
"This has been very hard, it's not only been a long run, we've been on the road for most of it," Maddon said. "That's made it a little more difficult. We've had a lot of adversity the first couple of months, and that's OK, because I want to see how we respond to it. In order to be good for an extended period of time, you've got to go through moments like this. And I think our guys have dealt with it well, emotionally, as a group."
Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.