BOSTON -- Jerry Sands joined the team on Sunday to replace injured outfielder Wil Myers, and manager Joe Maddon immediately put him at designated hitter in the cleanup spot against the Red Sox to make his Rays debut.
Sands was claimed off waivers by the Rays from the Pirates in December. He was hitting .268 with nine home runs and 36 RBIs in 54 games for Triple-A Durham.
The 26-year-old's last Major League game was Aug. 6, 2012, for the Dodgers, and his last hit was a pinch-hit double on May 22, 2012.
"We had to put Wil on the DL, so we brought up Jerry Sands, who's been doing a great job in Triple-A," Maddon said. "We had a good look at him in Spring Training. ... Really good guy. Actually plays better defense than he's given credit for. He fits in very well right now."
Maddon noted that given the Rays' lack of offense, there's a chance Sands could stick with the team.
"It's possible," Maddon said. "Absolutely it's possible. He's been in the big leagues before. He's definitely not overwhelmed by any of this. Again, he really presented well during Spring Training. I'd never met him before that. I thought, 'Solid guy, definitely has some severe power.'
"But beyond that, he's a better athlete than you are aware of. He runs better than you think. He plays defense better. He throws really well. So there's other things going on in there, too. But, of course, you want to get the power out of his bat."
Sprained wrist sends Myers to 15-day DL
BOSTON -- Wil Myers became the third Rays player placed on the disabled list this week, joining catcher Ryan Hanigan and outfielder Brandon Guyer.
Myers suffered a right wrist sprain on the final play of Friday night's 3-2 loss to the Red Sox. He had X-rays and saw a doctor on Saturday and then traveled home on Sunday. He is scheduled to see team orthopedist Dr. Koco Eaton on Monday.
"He's going through all the final checks right now," manager Joe Maddon said. "I don't think it's going to be prolonged from what [head athletic trainer] Ronnie [Porterfield] said, but you don't know until he goes through all the doctor checkups back home."
The reigning American League Rookie of the Year Award winner is hitting .227 with five home runs and 25 RBIs in 53 games this season. Maddon allowed that Myers having a little time away might not be the worst thing.
"It's not awful," Maddon said. "It's not absolutely awful. It's been a tough beginning for him this year. Maybe a little bit of a break right now keeps him frisky for the end of the year. Get this thing healed properly. Get feeling well. Maybe a couple of rehab at-bats, get this thing going in the right direction and bring him on back.
"Listen, for us to be really successful this year, he has to be in the middle of our lineup somewhere like he was last year. Let's see what's wrong first, and then create the program after that. Hopefully we get him back relatively soon."
The Rays selected first baseman/outfielder Jerry Sands from Triple-A Durham. To make room on the 40-man roster, infielder Tim Beckham was transferred to the 60-day DL.
Sternberg confident Rays can turn things around
BOSTON -- Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg has been in attendance at the Red Sox series over the weekend, and on Sunday, he addressed reporters on a variety of subjects.
First came his take on how his team has been doing thus far this season.
"We always try to temper our expectations," Sternberg said, "but clearly we thought we'd be positioned better at this point."
Sternberg noted that the Rays have dug themselves into a lot of holes in past seasons.
"But that doesn't have a lot of bearing on where we are right now," Sternberg said. "But we know it can be done. And I feel very confident in the plan we've put together and the players we have on the team. So I know that it's well within our skill set to do it."
If things don't turn around, will the team become sellers at the non-waiver Trade Deadline?
"I can talk or we can go by actions and there have been various things, you look at what we've done and handled," Sternberg said. "You go back to 2012 at the end of July and all hope was lost. I don't know how many games we were out at the trading deadline, but it was probably close to double digits. And we were not playing inspired baseball, and people were like, 'Who are they going to trade?' And the team stayed together.
"You can't bank copying the run that team had, but we're still two months away from that point. Clearly there's a point -- a team's 17 games out in the middle of July -- but by the same token, if you think you're in striking distance, and more importantly, if you have confidence in the guys here that they've got a good stretch of baseball in them. In a week or two, you look back and you could be in a different position."
Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.