Rays recall Shaffer, option Motter to Triple-A

Rays recall Shaffer, option Motter to Triple-A

ST. PETERSBURG -- Utility man Richie Shaffer was recalled from Triple-A Durham on Wednesday to begin his first stint with the Rays this season.

To make room for Shaffer, Taylor Motter -- who was recalled on Tuesday -- was optioned to Durham.

"Excited to have him back," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "He came up, had a good year in the Minor Leagues last year. This year, maybe got off to a little bit of a slower start, but he's come on of late. We've heard some good things. So, excited to get him back here. Play some first base, come off the bench a little bit for us."

Shaffer had two stints with the Rays in 2015, appearing in 31 games and making 13 starts, hitting .189 with four home runs and six RBIs. He was hitting .227 with eight home runs and 41 RBIs with the Bulls this season.

"Extremely excited to be back," Shaffer said. "Just looking forward to any opportunities I get. ... The season up until this point has been one for growing and learning. One that tested me many times.

"But it's sort of one of those, you look back on it, it's wild, because the moment you get a call that you're going to the big leagues, you're like, 'You really grinded.' Like that was tough. Anytime you experience something like that, I think you can draw positives out of that. I think I did a lot of positive things."

Cash was asked about the quick change of heart with Motter and explained that the Rays needed his versatility immediately, but once the dust had cleared from the chaos from Monday's non-waiver Trade Deadline, they could see that Shaffer fit the roster better right now.

Worth noting

• Right-hander Alex Cobb (Tommy John surgery) will make his fourth rehab start Thursday in Port Charlotte, Fla., for the Stone Crabs. Outfielder Mikie Mahtook (left-hand fracture) will begin playing for the Stone Crabs Wednesday night, and right-hander Chase Whitley (Tommy John surgery) will make a rehab start for Double-A Montgomery on Friday at Tennessee.

• After Brad Miller's home run into the Rays Touch Tank on Sunday against the Yankees, he chose to direct the Rays Baseball Foundation's $2,500 donation in his name to the Mikie Mahtook Foundation. The foundation is dedicated to the education and prevention of heart disease, in honor of Mahtook's father, Mike, who died of a heart attack at age 32.

Each time a Ray homers into the Rays Touch Tank, the Rays Baseball Foundation donates $2,500 to the Florida Aquarium and $2,500 to the charity of the player's choice. The only Ray to do it previously was catcher Jose Lobaton, who hit a walk-off against Koji Uehara in Game 3 of the 2013 ALDS vs. Boston.

Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.