THE GOOD: We know the numbers and we know there are other players that need playing time, but we hope that it kills Papa Joe Maddon to keep Jonny Gomes on the bench when he does. The first run of the game was all-Gomes. Started with a single, after which he stole second off of a lefty and then scored on a 2-out single by Dioner Navarro. He would later steal third base just before scoring on Jason Bartlett’s triple and moved to third in the 7th inning on a pitch in the dirt that barely got away from the catcher. He would score during that at bat on a ground out…Speaking of Jason Bartlett’s triple, how often are you happy when a player can’t get a bunt down? Bartlett appeared to be attempting a safety-squeeze in the 4th, fouling off one attempt and pulling back on the second pitch. He would then hit a triple to left-center that would score 2….A solid game from Evan Longoria. The opposite field double off the top of the wall in the 4th was a good sign as it was only his 3rd hit this season off a lefty. He also started a huge double play in the top of the 6th to quell a Yankees rally that had 2 runners on with only 1 out. Dirtbag gets rid of the ball faster than any third baseman we ever remember and his throws to second base are pinpoint.
THE BAD: Knowing that Jonny Gomes has to sit against righties. We understand. But we don’t like it.
THE TELLING: Cliff Floyd sat against the lefty while Jonny Gomes got the start at DH and Eric Hinske got the start in right…The Rays will have to earn tonight’s victory. Edwin Jackson takes the mound for the Rays while the Yankees will counter with their Ace, Chien-Ming Wang…The Rays remain 1 game up in the loss column over the Angels in the Wild Card standings. The Rays are 3 games up on the next teams, Baltimore and Cleveland.
DEVIL RAYS WEBTOPIA…
- Don’t forget to VOTE for Carl Crawford to start the all-star game. If you haven’t voted yet today, go NOW! For those that haven’t done it yet, once you have voted for the first time, it takes a matter of seconds to vote a second time. The ballot stores all your info. So you have ZERO excuses. C’mon, let’s make sure C.C. is in NYC in ’08. VOTE OR DIE! [MLB All-Star Voting]
- We will have the Rays Index Live Blog-A-Baloo on Wednesday night for game 3 of the Yankees series, with James Shields going against Mike Mussina. The Live Blog-A-Baloo will be held right here.
- Anybody want to take bets on what substances Her Rays was under the influence of when writing their post-game recap? Not that there is anything wrong with that. Much of the best writing in history was done “under the influence”. Just ask fans of the Beatles or Hunter Thompson. [Her Rays]
- Jonny Damon said that the scoreboard gun that had Matt Garza at 92-93 last night, must have been low. [New York Times]
Before we knew it, he was jamming us and making us pop out. That’s what happens when you’re late on the fastball, and it seemed like we were late all day. It just seemed like we couldn’t catch up to it.
- Ben Zobrist has been activated from the DL with Andy Cannizaro being DFA’d…Ahh Andy Whatever-your-name-is. We hardly knew ya. [Rays Report]
- Alex Rodriguez will not play in this series…Also, Marc Topkin says that Al Reyes could be activated as soon as today, although there is no clear indication who will be let go. Scott Dohmann and Gary Glover seem like the only options to be removed from the roster. Both are out of options, meaning they would have to be DFA’d. Of course, we could see another “Willy Aybar” injury by tomorrow afternoon. That is Dohmann or Glover could come down with a mystery ailment that would normally keep a player out for a week or so, but still need to go on the DL, just in time for a needed roster move and 2 months later, they are still MIA…Just sayin’. [The Heater]
- Gary Shelton says the Rays are not “fluky” and are here to stay. [St. Pete Times]
- Yet another positive piece on the Rays in the New York Times…That is 2 this season and 2 more than the Yankees have had. [New York Times]
- Here is a neat graph that compares payrolls to performance. [Benfry.com]
- Always in love with the underdog, Joe Maddon said that if he were to name MVPs for the first month and a half, it would be JP Howell and Jason Bartlett. [MLB]
- An early proposal for a ballpark in St. Pete circa 1983, looks an awful lot like the new proposed waterfront stadium. [Ballpark Frankness]
- Seriously, this is getting a bit ridiculous. Yahoo! Sports has the Rays ranked 5th in their power rankings. [Yahoo! Sports]
Supposed to be that the Rays would do well generally, but struggle against the AL East powers. They’re now 15-11 against their own division.
- The Rays will make public their financing plan for the proposed waterfront stadium on Thursday. [Ballpark Frankness]