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: John Jaso. With Evan Logngoria getting the day off, Jaso batted third and the Rays didn’t miss a beat. Jaso went 2-4 with a 2-run home run that tied the game and 4 GTMIs…Ben Zobrist. With Jason Bartlett getting the day off, Zobrist led off and was on base 3 times. For all of his early “struggles” Zobrist now has 5 multi-hit games in the last 6 and is hitting .309 with a .385 OBP, or about exactly where we would expect him to be…Hank Blalock. Blalock got the start at third and hit his first home run with the Rays…Joaquin Benoit. In his last 3 appearances, Benoit has faced 9 batters. He struck out all 9 including 3 in the 6th inning yesterday. Since being promoted, he has retired 23 of the 26 batters he has faced.
THE BAD: David Price. The Rays have dominated this season with big innings offensively and by their pitchers avoiding big innings. Price put the Rays in a big hole early by giving up 4 runs in the first. In the inning, the Astros batted around with 3 hits and 3 walks. The big blow was a 3-run home run by Pedro Feliz.
THE TELLING: The cap above is what the Rays will be wearing next Monday (Memorial Day), and on the 4th of July…Evan Longoria had the day off ending a streak of 131 consecutive games played. Hank Blalock started at third base…The Rays 6-game lead is the largest in franchise history surpassing the 5.5-game lead on August 31, 2008,
WHERE THEY STAND: The Rays are 32-12, with a 6-game lead in the East over the Yankees and a 7-game lead over the Tigers and Blue Jays in the Wild Card. After 44 games in 2008, the Rays were 25-19.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- A correction to a comment we made on Saturday. Dioner Navarro does have one option remaining and can be sent down without having to clear waivers (thanks Marc).
- John Jaso talks about his big day on Sunday (video). [The Heater]
- Tony Fabrizio writes about the suddenly surging Red Sox. [Rays Report]
- The BuildItDowntownTampa group has its eyes on two tracts of land in downtown Tampa for a new stadium. [Tampa Tribune]
- We’re still not sure if this comic makes us feel better or worse about the perfect game. [ArcaMax]
- Dock of the Rays made an appearance in Houston this weekend and has the pictures to prove it. [Dock of the Rays]
- The top 10 moments in the Rays-Red Sox rivalry. [WEEI]
- Rise of the Rays argues for a 6-man rotation. [Rise of the Rays]
- Murray Chass writes about the Rays rise to the top of baseball. [Murray Chass...On Baseball]
- John Romano writes about Dan Johnson, as he waits in triple-A for another shot with the Rays. [St. Pete Times]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
- Check out “The Rundown” from Rays Prospects for boxscores and more detailed recaps. [Rays Prospects]
- DURHAM: Aneury Rodriguez started and worked 2 innings before the game was suspended. Richard de los Santos picked it up in the 3rd and worked 5 innings, giving up 1 run…Desmond Jennings was 2-4 with a walk, a stolen base and 4 runs scored…Dan Johnson hit 2 home runs including a grand slam and drove in 8…Elliot Johnson had 2 singles and a double…Fernando Perez stole his 13th base.
- MONTGOMERY: Alex Torres allowed just 1 run in 6.2 innings. He struck out 7 and walked 1…Matt Sweeney went 1-3 with a double and an RBI.
- CHARLOTTE: Shane Dyer allowed 2 runs in 6 innings…Matt Joyce was 2-3 with a double and 2 walks…Tim Beckham was 1-3 with 2 walks and 2 stolen bases.
- BOWLING GREEN: Alex Colome gave up 2 runs in 6 innings on 6 hits and 3 walks. He struck out 4…Julio Cedeno hit his first home run…Christopher Murrill had 3 hits and now has 10 hits in the last 5 games.