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 Was Pumped Up. King David’s parents helped arrange for about 250 people to be at last night’s game from Price’s hometown. We have to wonder if that explained Price’s juiced up fastball. He was regularly hitting 97 and 98 on the gun with his 4-seem fastball, a pitch that typically averages about 95. Still, the results were about the same. A good, not great, outing with 3 runs allowed on 8 hits and 3 walks in just 5 innings. But he struck out 7, survived a couple of jams and picked up his 10th win. Price allowed runners into scoring position in each inning and even survived a bases loaded, no out situation in the second with 2 Ks and a groundball…Sean Rodriguez. His 2-run double in the first extended his hitting streak to 15. He also ended the third with a great sliding grab in foul territory. Jason Bartlett might start tonight, but we have to think his days as an everyday player with the Rays are over.

THE BAD: National League Rules. We used to be biggest defender of letting pitchers hit, but in recent years we have come to our senses. Letting pitchers hit is like making Martin Gramatica play QB once every 9 plays. Sure it adds to the “strategy,” but that doesn’t mean it is a better game. And sure the kicker could just hand off a lot. But sometimes it is going to be 3rd and 12. Kinda like how 3 times last night David Price came to the plate with runners on base and 2 outs. What a waste…John Jaso’s D. Rough night for Jaso behind the plate as all 3 runs off of David Price might have been prevented by a better catcher. Price was charged with 2 wild pitches. One should have been caught and the other should have easily been blocked. And in the 5th, Jaso missed the second base bag by 10 feet trying to throw out a basestealer. That runner scored when the next batter singled.

THE TELLING: The start of the game was delayed two and a half hours due to rain…Dioner Navarro received a cortisone shot and says he is now ready to play…Jason Bartlett’s second rehab start was rained out…For a couple of hours, the Rays were in second place a half-game behind the Yankees. It was the first time the Rays were not in first place since the first day of the season when the Rays did not play.

WHERE THEY STAND: The Rays are 41-23 tied with the Yankees in the AL East and 4 games ahead of the Red Sox in the Wild Card. After 64 games in 2008, the Rays were 38-26.

THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA

  • David Price talks about last night’s win (video). [The Heater]
  • The Rays other second round pick, Jacob Thompson, a pitcher from Long Beach State, is expected to sign today. [The Heater]
  • Joel Sherman writes that the Yankees might not need Carl Crawford next year. [NY Post]
  • The Mets drafted Cory Vaughn in the 4th round this year. He is the son of former Devil Ray Greg Vaughn…Personally, we were a little disappointed the Rays didn’t get the younger Vaughn. Not because we think he is a great prospect. But because his family owes the Rays a few years of cheap labor. [Mets Blog]

DOWN ON THE FARM

  • Check out “The Rundown” from Rays Prospects for boxscores and more detailed recaps. [Rays Prospects]
  • DURHAM: (postponed, rain)
  • MONTGOMERY: (no game scheduled)
  • CHARLOTTE: Matt Moore had his best start of the year, striking out 9, walking 1 and allowing just 2 hits in 6 shutout innings. The win improved his record to 2-7 with a 5.54 ERA…Stephen Vogt went 3-5 for the second straight night.
  • BOWLING GREEN: Kyle Lobstein pitched a 7-inning complete game in the first game, allowing 8 hits, striking out 6 and walking none…Alex Colome gave up 2 runs on 4 hits and 2 walks in 5 innings in the nightcap. He struck out 6.
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19 Comments

  1. Charles says:

    I still wear my Greg Vaughn jersey - it's my "I'm no bandwagon fan" badge of pride.

    It's pretty amazing to think that David Price is not all that far away from the team single season wins record and it's not even July yet. He hasn't always been great this season, but he's been good enough to get the job done and he's young enough for me to believe that greatness is still yet to come.

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  2. Jim says:

    "And in the 5th, Jaso missed the second base bag by 10 feet trying to throw out a basestealer."

    That should be changed to "trying to throw out the opposing catcher"

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  3. Sublime says:

    I have said this a couple of times on this forum, I would rather have a catcher that can play defense that one that can hit! I'm not saying Navi is the best defensive catcher in the world, but he's better than Jaso. There's a reason Jaso was in the Farm League system for so long, dude's defense stinks. That's not going to change in 4 months. If anything move him to DH, but I don't like his defensive game.

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    • Alex says:

      And Navarro's defense is that much of an upgrade you think? Have you seen him behind the plate? He's just as bad. He's awful at blocking balls in the dirt. He makes dumb decisions like trying to pick people off and throwing the ball into the outfield.

      The ball that Jaso missed above him was Price's fault. He was over throwing all night because he was way to amped up. The blocks were on Jaso and the throw was bad but Price doesn't exactly help. Jamie and Davis are the only two pitchers with any kind of move over to first base. Jaso's throwing guys out slightly less % wise as Navi. But at least when Jaso misses its in front of the bag or to the 2B/SS. When Navi misses its usually 10 feet in front of the bag or sailing into CF.
      9-27 (.333) for Jaso
      7-15 (.467) for Navi

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      • Alex says:

        The only thing Navarro has over Jaso is calling games and a comfortableness with the pitchers.

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    • Michael says:

      I hate this alot. All this talk about how good Jaso's bat has been in the minors. NO it wasn't. He was in the minors becasue he couldn'tt hit well nor field too well. Everyone acts like they have been waiting for Jaso''s amazing bat to get out of the minors. It never was like that at all. Most people didn't even know who Jaso was. :(

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  4. Tone says:

    I too think Jaso is our best DH option right now, give Navi and Shopp the cathing duties most days. Jason will be the everyday shortstop, not sure how you think his days are numbered? He had an amazing year in 09 and to think they will just platoon him now is so far from how we all have seen the Rays handle things. Look at Navi, he is still here. Jason also keeps their depth, but Joe will not sit him over a rookie. I think it's going to be a platoon at 2nd and Jason will get some DH time. We shall see though.

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    • MJ says:

      agreed I dont see how "his days are numbered". He has proven two years in a row that he is an avg hitter at worst, and he plays solid D (i dont really care about this years defensive metrics cause they are incomplete and they aren't the whole story). I don't understand why everyone is ready to dump JB because he hasn't had a hot start. Just because Reid and Sean have shown good signs as of late doesn't mean they will continue to be this way the whole season. Don't get me wrong, I love the way Rodriguez swings the bat and Reid is starting to look like a natural at ss. I just don't see JB going before the end of the season unless they can get something of major league ready value in return.

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  5. Gus says:

    CC's baserunning and defense late in the game was exceptional, especially for a game with a lead running late after midnight.

    Wasn't "Heart and Hustle" a Rays slogan a few years back?

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  6. carey says:

    First off, I disagree about Bartlett. Maddon is intensly loyal and I don't see him cutting JB's playing time just because Brig played well while he was injured. Not saying I disagree with the premise, as Brig has been impressive. Just that I don't see Maddon doing that.

    Second. Totally agree about the DH. Grew up a Braves fan and unadulterated "hater" of the DH rule. But watching the Rays, I see the point you made (and George Will also made in Men At Work) about the waste of having a pitcher bat. Plus, and correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the National League about the only league that actually has pitcher's bat? Minors us DH. Colleges use DH. High School uses DH and Little League uses DH. So, if anything, the DH is actually the norm and no DH the exception.

    Lastly, I was watching Durham (Hellickson) on Bright House Sports Network last night and Bartlett was playing. Was that a replay of Monday's game?

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    • Cork Gaines says:

      1. Yes, loyalty has usually been the norm with Maddon, but he seems to have changed in the last month or two. So much so that Maddon has become a platoon/matchup machine. Look at Burrell, even before he was cut. Look at Navi the last few weeks. Maybe Bartlett still gets 3-4 starts a week, but I think Maddon recognizes that against most righties, Briggy will be the better option both offensively and defensively.

      2. I've never looked it up, but I have heard others say the NL is the only league in the world where the pitchers hit.

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    • Will says:

      How did Hellickson look?

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  7. Don says:

    Does anyone realize as of this date Bartlett is a BETTER Player than Brig.
    He was/is one of their top 3/4 players...Brign. is a young
    minor league player who got a chance to prove he can play in the majors,
    And he did....Now he sticks...Its all a process...someday (next year) he will be as valuable to the Rays as Bartlett has been.... and is now!
    Maddon knows this!

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  8. leningan says:

    Platooning Jb and briggy makes perfect sense. JB is valuable to this team now, and will be as we make a run in the postseason, but his value diminishes daily. And his value over briggy is minimal at best. Let them both excel at what they do well. I am more concerned for barty in general as the hammy injuries don't fade away quickly, and we need him to find some of that '09 magic so we can get good value this offseason.

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  9. ramedy says:

    I would personally would love to see the DH go away (simple solution to pitchers killing rallies - practice a little), but ultimately I just wish we could stop talking about NL-only rules. DH in both or DH in neither. With the exception of Vlad and recent Big Papi, I don't see how the AL would be that much worse off without the old guys slumming it at DH.

    I have a hard time listening to any Rays fan being a fan of the DH too - pitchers not named Sonnanstine aren't likely to contribute much to the team with their bat; but at least they're contributing somewhere, and without costing the team and extra $8 million a year.

    And let's face it - Price coming up with runners on and 2 outs is not all that different from Navi coming up in the same situation.

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    • Cork Gaines says:

      Is your argument that NL pitchers can hit? Then why is it so rare to see them pinch-hit on off-days? Let's face it, there are maybe 5 pitchers that would be good enough to reach double-A as a hitter. I don't want to see David Price batting 9th anymore than I want to see Reid Fronk batting 9th (Rays prospect)

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  10. MJ says:

    Not to mention the DH is legal starting in high school. They are breeding non-hitting pitchers from the time kids are in their early teens. It's in the best interest of the NL at this point. Most NL fans would prob admit they want the DH, and now the players union is getting behind it. Only a matter of time.

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