A’s 5, Devil Rays 2.
On April 22, the Rays took a 4-2 lead into the 9th inning against the Indians. On that night, Joe Maddon was forced to use Brian Stokes in the 9th inning, with Al Reyes unavailable after having worked the previous two nights. Stokes gave up 3 runs including a 3-run home run to Ryan Garko and the Rays lost the game 6-4. Fast forward 2 weeks and Maddon was once again without Reyes. With the score tied 2-2 in the 9th, Maddon once again turned to Stokes. Stokes once again gave up a 3-run home run. We guess that winning three straight games was just too much to ask for and let’s face it, it has been a while since the bullpen imploded at a very inopportune time. Most of the Rays losses recently have been of the 9-1 variety, but last night reminded us just how shallow the Rays bullpen is.
DEVIL RAYS WEBTOPIA…
- BJ Upton has been moved into the #5 spot in the lineup.
- Greg Norton began his 2-week rehab stint at Montgomery last night. He was the Biscuits DH and went 1-3 with a double and 2 RBI.
- Joe Maddon is treating this entire season as extended spring training.
Three hours before Friday’s game, all 25 Devil Rays and the entire coaching staff were on the Tropicana Field turf for an extensive session of fundamental work. It sounds basic enough, but it’s a sight rarely seen once calendars turn past March. Pickoffs and pitchers’ fielding practice, cutoffs and relays – they’re drills usually confined to the monotonous days before games begin.
- The Rays bullpen is bad. Just plain bad.