The Good, The Bad and The Telling sandwich, where The Bad is nice and lean and the The Telling is ripe.
THE GOOD: David Price. Other than the 3 walks, Price once again showed that he can be a very good big league pitcher on a consistent basis. He worked deep (7 innings) and allowed just 3 hits…Pat Burrell. He continues to be Pat the Good. 2 more hits and a walk. He is not carrying the team yet, but he is no longer dragging them down either.
THE BAD: K Parade. 15 strikeouts by Rays hitters. The Rays are second in the AL in strikeouts. Yep. They are just one out. But when a batter is retired without putting the ball in play, runners don’t have a chance to advance, which leads to…Coming Up Empty. The Rays went 3-up, 3-down in 4 different innings. And in the other 5 innings they were 0-8 with runners in scoring position…It’s Not The Heat. We keep harping on walks, but you can’t ignore them. Price only walked 3, but 2 of them came around to score, including the leadoff walk in the 3rd.
THE TELLING: The Rays finished the homestand at 6-3. Before the series, we suggested the Rays needed 7 wins to thrust themselves back in the thick of the race. And as this team has done all season, they played just well enough to tease and to not fall off the pace….The Rays now trail Boston in the Wild Card standings by 3 games and are 2 behind the Rangers…CoolStandings.com gives the Rays a 15.2% shot at making the playoffs. Meanwhile Baseball Prospectus says it is 25.2% and their PECOTA version is only 11.3%.
SUNBURST PLAYER OF THE GAME: David Price. (Scott Kazmir and Carlos Pena took home the honors on Friday and Splayaturday)
DEVIL DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Joe Henderson wonders if the Rays have what it takes, and wonders if they can be consistent enough to make the playoffs. [Tampa Tribune]
- John Romano has the visual evidence of the Rays in their “Ring of Fire” attire for the upcoming roadtrip. [St. Pete Times]
- Joe Smith writes about the decision to have David Price start the season in the minors and what it means for Price and the Rays now. Also, Smith looks at what Gregg Zaun has meant for the pitching staff since he arrived. [St. Pete Times]
- Apparently Joe Maddon has already been able to put the perfect game by Mark Buehrle out his mind as he referred to yesterday’s performance by Scott Feldman as “the best pitched game against [The Rays] all year.” [St. Pete Times]
- Joey Johnston says the key to the Rays playoff hopes is Jason Bartlett. [Tampa Tribune]
- Larry Williams is the only one of 10 mayoral candidates in St. Pete that has committed to doing whatever it takes to keep the Rays in St. Pete, saying the Rays are good for the local economy. [St. Pete Times]
- Area fashion experts weighed in on Joe Maddon’s new look. [St. Pete Times]
- LeVon Washington will attend Chipola College in north Florida and reenter the draft next June. [Rays Report]