Red Sox Rays Baseball

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: David Price. Two straight strong starts and he just looks like a different pitcher on the mound now. Something has clicked and King David has found his MoJo. He did give up two home runs. But as last night proved, it is not the home runs that kill you, it is the walks before the home runs. And last night Price walked none…Jason Bartlett. He hit his 9th home run in the 7th and then came back in the 8th and saved a run with an over-the-shoulder catch. If he doesn’t make that catch it is a 1-run game and the inning is still going…Carlos Pena. This is how Pena got his groove back. Everybody should have seen the home run coming after his at bat in the 10th the night before. He didn’t hit last night’s home run any harder. He just got under it a bit more…Pat Burrell. Extra BP paid off and Pat the Bat looked more determined than we remember him being in a Rays uniform.

THE BAD: The Trop. A little surprised how indifferent fans were to Rocco Baldelli’s first game back at the Trop. No boos. No applause. Just complete indifference…Jeff Bennett. Well, that warm and fuzzy feeling from his first outing went away pretty quick. He faced 2 batters and retired neither.

THE TELLING: The Rays are now 3 behind the Red Sox (4 in the loss column) in the Wild Card race…The Rays are now 14-2 in the last 16 against the Red Sox at the Trop…Hit Tracker had Carlos Pena’s home run at only 407 feet, which comes up 59 feet short of the one he hit back in June against the Nationals.

SUNBURST PLAYER OF THE GAME: David Price.

DEVIL DOGS WEBTOPIA

  • On a sad note, Dodgers announcer Vin Scully has announced he will retire after next season. I have said this before…The best thing about MLB’s Extra Innings package is that during the summer, I get to fall asleep every night to Vin Scully telling me a bedtime story. [Chicago Tribune]
  • Rob Dibble was on a radio show and was critical of Evan Longoria’s celebration following his walk-off home run on Tuesday night. If it was the 3rd inning, fine. But it was extra-innings against the Rays chief rival. And it wasn’t like he stood at home plate for 10 seconds jumping up and down. And since when is Rob Dibble the voice of all that is “right” in baseball? Rob Dibble is and always will be, a blowhard. [Biscuit Crumbs]
  • Gary Shelton says the Rays are “finally they’re playing like the contender everyone expected them to be.” [St. Pete Times]
  • Joe Henderson says the Rays did exactly what they needed to do to get back in the race. [Tampa Tribune]
  • Marc Lancaster spoke with Carl Crawford about how he feels. In years past, CC would start to break down this time of year. This year is different. [Tampa Tribune]
  • Dan Barbarisi talked to some of the Red Sox about whether the Trop is a tough place to play or if the Rays are just that good. [Providence Journal]
  • The Rays admit they have been warned previously about having bags in the bullpen area. It was one of these bags that cost the Rays a run on Tuesday night. [St. Pete Times]
  • Joe Dillon talks about his role as 25th man on the roster. A role that off limits his action to once a week. [MLB]

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11 Comments

  1. Joel says:

    We’ll really know how far Price has come during his next road start. I’m usually not all that convinced about home/road splits, but it’s very hard to argue against these numbers:

    Price at home: 7 starts, 5-1 record, 2.72 ERA, 4 HR, .219 BAA
    Price on road: 6 starts, 0-3 record, 8.20 ERA, 9 HR, .324 BAA

    The only team he’s played against at home and on the road is Toronto:

    July 9 at home: 6.0 innings, 6 hits, 0 HR, 1 BB, 1 R, 7 K
    July 25 on road: 3.0 innings, 9 hits, 3 HR, 0 BB, 6 R, 1 K

    Is he running on adrenaline at home? Is he pressing on the road? I don’t get it, but there’s definitely something there. His next road start is against the Angels, who he beat at home despite 6 BB. That should tell us a lot.

    • Beth says:

      Can’t the Rays pay to ship his mattress, his dog, his favorite video games…whatever makes him feel comfotable at home….on the road?

  2. Don says:

    Two thoughts on Burrell situation:

    1) Funny how people (athletes or workers) react when they are about to lose their job….99% of time performance improves!
    2) Burrell has been “assigned” extra batting practice under Maddons direct supervision …Gee… too bad someone (Maddon) didn’t think about something like that the last two months when Burrell was hitting .200 ??

    • Feel free to mock PtB all you want… just remember, the Rays put their eggs in his basket. The Rays need an effective PtB to make a run. You don’t want your August bench consisting of Joe Dillionaire, Michel Hernandez, and PtB. Willy’s got his job and PtB has his. They both need to perform for this teem to catch the Red Sox and the Yankees.

    • bobrittner says:

      These are not thoughts. They have nothing in common with thinking.

      • Don says:

        Dear Bob …just quote me some stupid figures..that mean actually nothing! ..instead, try to watch things going on the field and try to figure out what is going on and WHY! Thoughts will come to you….maybe!

        • bobrittner says:

          Ok, it’s futile but I’ll bite. You made 2 statements, neither of which is remotely connected to intelligent observation or thinking. So let’s see you defend them as if they were.

          1. To paraphrase, “99% of the time people whose jobs are threatened improve their performance.”

          Now there really is a meaningless statistical statement. But let’s give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you don’t actually mean it as statistically accurate, but simply as a general statement of truth. Similar in that regard to such meaningless bromides as 75% of baseball is about the pitching which simply means that pitching is important and no more.
          Even in that regard, the statement is patently ridiculous. There is no evidence, statistical or anecdotal, that threats or fear improve job performance in any field. It is true that some people are moved by such means, and it is true that some leaders use those means effectively. But it is equally true that many people do more poorly under that sort of pressure and that many leaders are far more effective using other incentives than threats. The statement itself is based not on observation even, but on cliched nonsense from people who think tough talk equals macho character, as if the last word in knowledge is “Make my day.”

          2. Again paraphrasing “Too bad Maddon did not think to provide Burrell with remedial batting practice much earlier.”

          Aside from the fact that there is no evidence he didn’t, and that working on batting is a continual process and that nobody has accused Burrell of not working hard and that there might be many reasons that Burrell has under-performed expectations, it is also reasonable that it is only recently that some specific problem has manifested itself. It is like asking why it took so long to straighten out Price or Kazmir or for that matter any player who slumps over a long period.
          To think of the numerous possibilities is to observe and draw (tentative) conclusions from those observations. And to think is to be aware of the complexity of issues and to eschew summing them up in semi-clever phrases and trite, emotional assertions. The hallmark of the irrational is the inability to deal with new information and the characteristic of fitting all data or observations into pre-assumed views.

          You might note Wally Pipp’s comments which conclusions I think he will agree remain tentative but which are interesting and might lead to worthwhile analysis-or thinking. They are based on observation combined with a useful reference to statistics for support of those observations.

          • Don says:

            I think I know who you are…Your my old English Professor….
            He used to talk in circles, often refering to statistics to back up his lunacy, and he put us all to sleep after 5 or 10 min. of bull shit!
            I’ll stick to my position ….if you LEARN to observe YOU can better understand what you are seeing!!

    • Wally Pipp says:

      Over the past month or so, Pat’s power numbers have leveled out. In his past 30 starts, he has 6 HR and 6 2B (plus 1 3B!). That calculates to about 32 HRs and 2Bs over a full year. Those are right in line with his career averages.

      His HR and RBI production during that time is on par with Pena and Longoria. And much better than Zobrist.

      Obviously his batting average and strikeout rate are off, but just a couple more singles and a couple fewer strikeouts per week, and this is the Pat Burrell we thought the Rays were getting.

  3. MJ says:

    If you read that providence journal article, it sounds like rocco has a lil grudge w/ either the trop or the rays, and the fans. Maybe he can just speak his mind now that he isn’t part of the team…

    • Beth says:

      I actually thought this Providence Journal article was fairer than today’s coverage of last night’s game in the Boston Globe (I’m not good with links, but I’ll give it a try: http://www.boston.com/sports/baseball/redsox/articles/2009/08/06/another_fall_in_tampa_drops_the_sox_2_12_back/). Adam Kilgore’s article made it sound as though Tropicana Field, and not an actual baseball team, beat the Red Sox. He complains about cowbells, fluorescent lighting, and catwalks (which, from what I heard on the radio, did not interfere with any plays during this series). Well, if the problem was the Trop, wouldn’t the Devil Rays have had winning home records for years? And he has the nerve to complain that the fans were actually rooting for the Rays — which put the poor Sox at a real disadvantage!

      I’ve never seen anything as whiny as this article. I think now any time I screw up I will just blame it on “cowbells and catwalks”.

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