When the Rays mapped out how they expected the events to unfold before the season began, they didn't see a scenario in which two rookie pitchers would start both ends of a doubleheader at Fenway Park, a doubleheader that would kick start a seven-game, six-day road trip through Boston and New York.

Nor did they envision three rookie pitchers making four of the seven starts on this trip.

"But," pitching coach Jim Hickey said, "the circumstances are what they are."

Trades and injuries forced a turnover on the pitching staff, making it younger than anyone anticipated it would be at this point of the season. Younger than anyone anticipated it would be this year, period.

"But we're certainly prepared for it," Hickey said. "When you talk about being seven starters deep, it's not just talk."

Make that eight starters deep.

Injuries to David Price and Alex Cobb have forced Chris Archer, Jake Odorizzi and Alex Colome into the rotation. The Rays expect Price to return to the rotation before the All-Star break. They expect Cobb to return from a concussion this season, as well.

Until then, Archer and Colome are here to stay with Odorizzi back at Triple-A Durham waiting for another call.

The good news is the kids are talented.

The bad news is the kids are, well, kids.

The Rays traded James Shields and Wade Davis to the Royals in the offseason for four prospects, including rookie right fielder Wil Myers and Odorizzi.

Including this season, Shields has thrown 1,560.2 big-league innings over 233 major-league games. Davis, who started Saturday, brought 533.1 innings over 132 outings into the game.

Add Price (841.1 innings, 134 games) and Jeff Niemann (544.1, 97), who's out for the year after having shoulder surgery in April, and that's an awful lot of innings in Kansas City or in the trainer's room.