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: 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.
DEVIL DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- 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]