Rocco Baldelli put the team on his back last night, but it wasn’t enough as the Yankees beat the Rays 7-4 to complete the 3-game sweep. The Yankees decided not to start 17-game winner Chien-Ming Wang, and sat all of their regular outfielders due to the weather. Rocco led off the game with a triple and was driven in by Delmon Young on Delmon’s 21st birthday. No truth to the rumor that Joe Maddon had a beer waiting for him back in the dugout. Rocco added a solo home run in the 3rd and a 2-run shot in the 5th. Baldelli was the first visiting player since Bo Jackson in 1990 to get a homer or a triple in each of his first three at bats at Yankee Stadium. James Shields cruised through the first four innings, allowing only a solo home run to Hideki Matsui. Then the rain came and Shields fell apart. After Baldelli’s second home run of the night, the Rays led the Yankees 4-1. Shields immediately gave up that lead in the bottom of the 5th, and then was removed from the game with a tight hamstring. The bullpen gave up three more runs in the 7th.

There was some good news last night. Kansas City won their third straight game and as a result, the Rays have pulled within a half game of the lead in the race for the worst record in baseball and the rights to the first pick in next June’s draft. Both Cincinnati and Houston won last night, so neither team was eliminated. Still, don’t rule out the pathetic Orioles, who continue to lose, and lose, and lose. They arenow only 6.5 games back. A lot of ground to be made up, but we don’t doubt they can do it.

Who is David Price? David Price is the front-runner to be the top pick of Major League Baseball’s 2007 amateur entry draft. Price is a 6’6″ pitcher at Vanderbilt that some scouts have called the left-handed version of Mark Prior. This past season Price went 9-5 with a 4.16 ERA and 155 strikeouts in 110 innings. For Team USA this summer, Price went 5-1 and a 0.20 ERA with 61 strikeouts and 7 walks in 44 innings. He won Baseball America’s Summer Player of the Year award for 2006. Obviously a lot can change in the next 9 months. He could suck next year…He could sign Scott Boras as his agent…his arm could fall off…he could get abducted by aliens…he could get Matt Leinart pregnant…the possibilities are endless. In the meantime, the race is on! May the worst team win.

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  1. Jake Larsen says:

    Other players to look at are....

    Matt Wieters of GT Tech, one of the most polished catching prospects(and decent reliever, as well). Voted as the MVP of the Cape Cod League, this past summer.

    Andrew Brackman is a 6'11" SP out of NC State who has a top notch fastball and decent off-speed stuff. Many believe that now, since he's fully devoting his time to baseball(played basketball for NCSU as well).

    Kellen Kublacki is a dark-horse as well, playing in a very hitter-friendly JMU park and playing OF. Great overall hitter and has no flaws in fielding.

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