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: Andy Sonnanstine. The Duke has tossed 8 scoreless innings in his last 3 appearances and has retired 14 in a row helping to save the bullpen from some poor outings by the starting pitchers and rescuing the Rays from a near-disaster on Saturday. Does this mean the Rays have finally found a role where Sonny can thrive, or has he rediscovered his mechanics? If the later, one has to wonder if The Duke is an option to give Wade Davis a breather in the rotation…Dan Wheeler. Two perfect innings kept the Rays in the game late.
THE BAD: Wade Davis. There is plenty to not like about last night’s start. But it starts with a 30-pitch 1st inning and a 42-pitch 3rd inning, which led to being pulled with 1 out in the 5th inning having already thrown 103 pitches. With Davis struggling and the Rays reeling, we can now start to wonder when Jeremy Hellickson gets the call. Hellboy could be the shot in the arm this team needs right now. Of course, if James Shields goes out tonight and tosses a 2-hit shutout, that might work also…Sean Rodriguez. It is hard to be included in “The Bad” when you don’t swing a bat or put on a glove. But Carlos Pena walked to leadoff the 9th, Rodriguez came in as a pinch-runner. He then proceeded to get thrown out trying to steal second. It was the second out and killed the rally and effectively ended the game…BJ Upton. 0-4 with 3 strikeouts. In June, he is .243-0-6 with a .343 SLG.
THE TELLING: Last night was Dewayne Staats’ 5,000th game as an announcer…James Shields will make his regularly scheduled start tonight despite pitching out of the ‘pen on Saturday night…Attendance for last night’s game was 14,650.
WHERE THEY STAND: The Rays are 42-28, 1.5 games behind the Yankees and tied (1 game up in the loss column) with the Red Sox in the Wild Card. After 70 games in 2008, the Rays were 41-29.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- In case you missed it, the Cork-Board has been updated with Hudson Valley and Princeton rosters. [Cork-Board]
- Might Evan Longoria get on stage and play drums with Tantric? If the band has their way, he will…For those of you that will be at the game, we expect photos and/or video submissions. Don’t let us down. [Tampa Tribune]
- Want a chance to beg Carl Crawford to stay? Now you’ve got it. CC is now officially on Twitter. [Twitter]
- Gabe Kapler is feeling better but has no timetable for his return. [St. Pete Times]
- Jake McGee on his return from Tommy John surgery: “I feel my stuff is almost better than it was two years ago.” [Montgomery Advertiser]
- This one is for the ladies…Matt Garza and his son went to Adventure Island on Father’s Day. The Orlando Sentinel provides the gratuitous topless shot of Matt and his goatee. [Orlando Sentinel]
- Jeremy Hellickson and Desmond Jennings have been selected to participate in the Future’s Game during the All-Star break.
- Justin George compares the Rays fight for a new stadium to the Lightning’s move to Tampa. [St. Pete Times]
- A local couple got to go on a shopping spree with Kelly Shoppach. Luckily for the couple, it was Shoppach in charge of catching the items with the cart, and not John Jaso…what? Too soon? [MLB]
- Pat Andriola looks at David Price’s increased reliance on the curveball. [Fangraphs]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
- Check out Rays Prospects for boxscores and more detailed recaps. [Rays Prospects]
- DURHAM: Heath Phillips gave up 8 runs on 10 hits, including 4 home runs in 5.1 innings…Desmond Jennings was back in the leadoff spot and went 2-5 with a triple…Matt Joyce was 1-4 with a walk.
- MONTGOMERY: Alex Torres walked 6 in 5 innings, allowing 2 runs. He struck out 3…Emeel Salem and Leslie Anderson homered for the Biscuits.
- CHARLOTTE: Nick Barnese pitched a 7-inning complete game in the opener, holding Jupiter to 1 run on 3 hits and no walks. He struck out 2…Chris Andujar started the nightcap and gave up just 1 run on 2 hits and a walk in 5 innings…Tim Beckham went 0-6 in the double-header…
- BOWLING GREEN: (no game scheduled)
- HUDSON VALLEY: (suspended in the second inning)
- PRINCETON: Nolan Diaz allowed 3 runs (2 earned) in 5 innings. He struck out 4…Kyle Hoppy went 2-5 with a double and an RBI.