If you have been hanging around these parts for a while, you know that the model for this site is to tell you what the Rays have done, what they are doing and try to project what they will do based on what we have learned. Unlike most team blogs, we do not very often tell you what the Tampa Bay Rays should do. However, for the next 12 days we will step away from the standard, and we present to you 12 “presents” the Tampa Bay Rays should give to their fans.
On the ninth day of Raysmas, the Tampa Bay Rays gave to us, NINE no-hit innings in one game…
This is a repeat from last year’s Raysmas series, and it will continue to be a part of the list until a Rays pitcher throws a no-hitter. Let’s just hope we don’t have to wait as long as Mets fans.
While nobody really flirted with a no-hitter, there were a few starts in 2008 that showed the Rays young rotation is capable of the feat. James Shields tossed a 2-hit shutout against the Red Sox in April and then followed that up two weeks later with an even more impressive 1-hit shutout of the Angels.
Andy Sonnanstine added a 3-hit shutout against the White Sox and Scott Kazmir had four starts in which he pitched at least 6 shutout innings with no more than 3 hits.
But the guy we think has the best chance of throwing a no-hitter for the Rays is Matt Garza. In August, Garza threw a 2-hit shutout with 9 strikeouts against the Rangers. And still, that start paled in comparison to his one hit, one run, one walk, 10 strikeout domination of the Marlins in June. A solo home run by Hanley Ramirez to lead off the 7th was the only flaw in what was the most dominating performance we have ever seen from a Rays pitcher.
While no-hitters are certainly rare, the Rays pitching staff is such that a no-no would not surprise anybody. Once David Price is a member of the rotation, the Rays will start every game with a pitcher that is capable of pitching a no-hitter. To us it seems more a question of “when” as opposed to “will they”.
On the ninth day of Raysmas, all Rays fans want is NINE no-hit innings and…
EIGHT starts for Jeff Niemann [Day 8]
SEVEN-year extension for BJ Upton [Day 7]
SIX months with at least 15 wins [Day 6]
FIVE-year extension for Matt Garza [Day 5]
FOUR pitchers with 15 wins [Day 4]
THREE Gold Glove awards [Day 3]
TWO months in triple-A for David Price [Day 2]
ONE impact bat with a bow on top [Day 1]