Time to bring back the GBT – The Good, The Bad and The Telling sandwich, where The Bad is nice and lean and the The Telling is ripe.
THE GOOD: BJ Upton. Two games. Two home runs. Let’s hope that he has that same mojo he discovered in the playoffs last year. Upton has the ability to put this team on his back and carry them for 2-3 weeks…Matt Garza. In the previous 4 games, starters had thrown a total of 15.1 innings leaving 20.2 innings for the bullpen. While Joe Maddon would have loved 7 or 8 innings, Garza did well to get through 6 despite throwing 120 pitches…The Bullpen again. 3 more shutout innings yesterday with only 1 hit, 1 hit batter and no walks…Zorilla. The pitching staff can have aces in the bullpen. Joe Maddon also has an ace on his bench as Ben Zobrist once again came off the bench and produced a big late-inning RBI. This one was an RBI double in the 8th to stretch the lead to 2…Jason Bartlett. He is showing no signs of letting up. 2 more RBI. His 10th steal. His 1-3 actually droppped his average to .359. If Maddon is going to keep that hot bat burried at the bottom of the order, can’t Barty at least hit 9th as the “second leadoff.”…CC. 2 more hits and he is now hitting .338. He now has 7 multi-hit games in the last 8 and is hitting .424 in May.
THE BAD: Joe Maddon. This is barely a bad, but 120 pitches from Matt Garza in May? When Garza is throwing well, he is not putting a lot of stress on his arm, but that did not seem to be the case for him yesterday. One of the telling indicators for Garza is pitch-one. When he is on, he is strike-one to 70%+ batters. Yesterday he was ball-one to 14 of the 27 batters including 6 of the 7 batters faced in the 6th inning. To give Garza 120 pitches yesterday stinks a bit of desperation.
THE TELLING: The Devil Rays ($11) have stolen a base in 18 straight games, the longest streak in the AL since 1914…The Devil Rays ($12) are now 18-20, 6.5 games behind the Jays, 4.5 behind the Sox and 2 behind the Yankees. Since falling a season-low 5-games below .500 at 11-16 on May 4, they are 7-4.
SUNBURST PLAYER OF THE GAME: BJ Upton. This one was a bit of a toss-up, but Bossman’s home run could be bigger for this team than just the one game.
DEVIL DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- We are sure that many of you are aware, but the book “Moneyball” is being made into a motion picture with Brad Pitt in the role of Billy Beane. While much of the cast is known, we have been waiting for an announcement of who would play the Devil Rays’ ($13) Chad Bradford, who was featured prominently in the book. Well it turns out it might be Bradford himself…Which is too bad. We had been hoping for Mos Def. [St. Pete Times]
- Gary Shelton takes a look at BJ Upton’s resurgance. [St. Pete Times]
- The Rays Party takes a look at Scott Kazmir’s velocity. [The Rays Party]
- Jeremy Hellickson is back to throwing and feels he will be ready to return soon. [Biscuit Crumbs]
- Many think the Devil Rays ($14) will target a catcher in this year’s draft. The Rays Party takes a look at the top catchers available. [The Rays Party]