Rays Orioles Baseball

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.

click above image for boxscore

THE GOOD: Edwin Jackson. Nuke has a 2.60 ERA and a 35-to-11 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Wait. What? That’s not good? He is pitching for Detroit and the Rays are stuck with Andy Sonnanstine and Jeff Niemann and a David Price that can’t handle triple-A? What the….

THE BAD: Genius is fleeting. We could talk all about Andy Sonnanstine’s performance, but that is getting old. The Bad starts and ends with Joe Maddon. It was announced prior to the game that Pat Burrell would not start with stiffness in his neck but that he would be available to pinch hit. In the 9th inning with the Rays trailing by 2, a runner on first and 2 outs and a lefty on the mound , Maddon elected to allow Willy Aybar to bat with Burrell still sitting on the bench. Yes, with the game on the line, Maddon chose to go with the career backup over one of the best RBI guys in baseball. You want to go to a gun fight? Fine. But you can’t go down with one of your best bullets still in the chamber. Either Burrell is available or not. If he is, you use him. You don’t hope Aybar gets on. You use Burrell. We know Aybar is a good hitter. But there is a reason that Burrell is the starting DH and Aybar is not.

THE TELLING: The Rays are 9-6 against the Sox and Yankees but are only 2-4 against the Orioles. They were 15-3 against the O’s last year…Evan Longoria had another RBI last night to give him 45 through 34 games. That is the most since Roy Campanella had 47 in 1953. Campanella won the MVP that season.

SUNBURST PLAYER OF THE GAME: Evan Longoria. On base 3 times, and drove in his 45th run, literally seconds after the Orioles TV announcers said it would be difficult for Longo to maintain his RBI pace.


  • Around the second inning last night we got about half-dozen emails and comments abut the Rays radio broadcast. Turns out we got a nice little shout-out from Andy Freed and Dave Wills during Ben Zobrist’s first at bat in the second inning, in which they plug our new “Zorilla” t-shirt. Does this mean that we have to pay them a commission?

  • Shawn Riggans does not need surgery on his shoulder, but he will be out for another month. [The Heater]
  • Jeff Niemann made some changes to his mechanics in an effort to help keep his pitches down. [Tampa Tribune]
  • Marc Topkin has a nice piece on Evan Longoria and how he has become one of the best players in baseball. [St. Pete Times]
  • Joe Maddon was honored on Tuesday morning at the Pennsylvania State Capitol. [MLB]
  • Rays the Stakes wants to know why Carlos Pena was on the bench Sunday night. [Rays the Stakes]




  1. I wasn't as upset about Maddon leaving Pat the Bat on the bench as you were. I think I had already decided that the Rays weren't going to come back. I do think, however, Trembley outmanaged Maddon when he decided to come with the reliever right away while Maddon stayed with Sonnanstine. Trembley was interested in winning last night's game. Maddon was too busy worrying about tomorrow night (saving relievers).

    • it was interesting that Maddon stuck with Duke so long when the other days he was so quick to pull Niemann. I know there are exceptions but generally when Sonnanstine is getting hit, he rarely gets better asthe game goes on. He either has it that night or he doesn't.

  2. Dirtbag Fan says:

    Congrats on the shout-out from the radio guys... sweet!

  3. Justin H says:

    .5 game up on the O's for last place, nice

  4. Ben says:

    Aybar was 2 for 4 entering that at bat and he had scored a run. I can see why he didn't want to use somebody, who did not take BP, or prepare for the game.

  5. Jim from NPR says:

    I really think Joe maddon is being out managed on almost a game by game basis this year. The reality is we could of very easily swept the Red Sox, IF, when JP Howell was struggling in game 1, Maddon went to the hook after Pedroia got on. Maddon wants to rest Pena BEFORE a ts day off, starts Aybar, and Willy tries but blows the throw home to nail the runner, then brings Pena in in the 9th. Last night, he starts Zobrist at 2nd, DH's Aybar(who plays a decent 2nd base), and has Pat the Bat on the bench and again, doesn't use the best player available. Let's be brutally honest here, Maddon made questionable, but GREAT moves last year, and got away with them. This year, he can't get out of his own way. Upton should NOT be leading off; Kaz,Sonny/Neiman should not be starting if they cannot help this team. Bring Wade davis up, leave price in Durham to grow up and get his act together. Issy is close, Matt Joyce appears to be ready. This is still a winnable situation, move Upton either back to his thrid spot, or maybe even 7th. Let Aki or barlett set the table.

  6. Sam A says:

    Great job by the bully last night. Six shutout innings.

    This team will not go anywhere with 3/5 of the starting rotation not able to get past the fifth inning on a regular basis. The relievers will all burn out by July.

    • Dirtbag Fan says:

      changes are imminent...

    • GatorRaysHead says:

      I am a little surprised we didnt call someone up from AAA for todays game. We know Niemann can only go 5. Cormier can pitch 2, maybe 3. Nelson can probably throw 1, Percy can only throw 1, and Shouse is only good for 1 or 2 outs. I assume JP, Grant, and Wheeler are unavailable. That means we will be in big trouble if this game goes into extra innings. Hopefully we get a big lead and Niemann can last 6, but I am concerned.

      BTW the worst thing about last nights game was that we couldnt score against Baltimore's pen. That was inexcusable.

      • Sam A says:

        Agree about not scoring off their pen. Bass threw FOUR shutout innings to lower his ERA to 5.18. Those things happen, but it is very frustrating to watch.

    • Sublime says:


      You hit it right on the head! This kind of pitching will burn the bullpen out, plus, I stated this before, giving up Jackson was a mistake! You basically have one power pitcher in the line-up. These dudes have to throw perfect games to be effective. Niemann and Sonnestine have been horrible to average at best (Andy had a good start in NY), but the strong point of last years team, the pitching, is not good at this point and unless stronger starts happen, changes need too!


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