Steven Stamkos, Ben Bishop, Brian Boyle and Alex Killorn showed fresh enthusiasm for participating in another sport, taking batting practice hacks before throwing out the first pitch(es) prior to the Major League ballgame.
The hockey players who lost out in the Stanley Cup final to the Chicago Blackhawks in six games, hung out in the clubhouse and dugout, met many of the first-place Rays and took a turn in the batting cage prior to the game. Bishop, the 6-foot-7-inch goaltending star displayed a fluid swing, connecting for four homers in batting practice.
Stamkos, also a big baseball fan, knocked one ball off the foul pole and asked for a video review. He also managed to work up several blisters on his hand. "It's a game that I love, " Stamkos told the Tampa Bay Times. "These guys are tremendous athletes and the way that these guys can hit the ball, I'm sure they say the same thing about us on skates. This isn't an easy game to play."