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: Sean Rodriguez. Rodzilla was 3-3 on Sunday to extend his hitting streak to 14 games. In that span, he is 21-49 (.429) with 5 doubles and 3 home runs. We think the Rays are running out of excuses to *not* have a Brignac-Rodriguez starting middle infield…Carlos Pena. Unfortunately, Pena did not homer on Sunday. But that marked the first time he failed to homer in a game since last Saturday a streak of 6 straight games with a home run. During that span, Pena was 10-27 with 7 home runs and 10 RBI.

THE BAD: Nobody To GTMI. Of Carlos Pena’s 7 home runs in 6 games, the grand slam against the Blue Jays was the only one that wasn’t a solo shot…Bad Inning James. On Friday, James Shields walked 3 batters in the Marlins 5-run 3rd inning. How rare was that? Only 6 times in his career has Shields walked more than 3 in an entire game. And only 1 time has he walked more than 4…Bobblehead Bartlett. Sunday was Jason Bartlett Bobblehead day. Unfortunately the Rays didn’t trade those bobbleheads and substitute a Reid Brignac Bobblehead...Kevin Kennedy Hurts My Brain. On one particular play Saturday night, a play Dewayne Staats and Kevin Kennedy spent way too much time praising, a ball hit high off the wall and past BJ Upton. Kennedy noted that Upton “would have caught that if it wasn’t so high up.” Yeah, and I could do a 360° dunk if the rim wasn’t so high.

THE TELLING: Jason Bartlett will play rehab games for Durham today and tomorrow. He will likely be activated on Wednesday. At that point the Rays will likely place Dioner Navarro on the DL with a sore left roster spot. Navi hasn’t played since Wednesday. After his DL stint, Navi will almost certainly need an extended “rehab” stint at Durham…Sunday was Jeff Niemann’s first loss at home in over a year…Evan Longoria has reached base in 31 straight games, the longest current streak in baseball…On Saturday, Jeremy Hall of Montgomery extended his scoreless innings streak to 35 before giving up 2 runs in the 6th inning…Pat Burrell hit his first home run for the Giants on Friday. He is 9-24 since switching back to the NL.

WHERE THEY STAND: The Rays are tied with the Yankees at 40-23 and are 4 games ahead of the Red Sox in the Wild Card. After 63 games in 2008, the Rays were 37-26.

THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA

  • Jeff Niemann talks about yesterday’s performance. [The Heater]
  • Roger Mooney reports that Rocco Baldelli threw longtoss prior to Sunday’s game…It has been his ability to throw that has limited his efforts to return to the big leagues. [Tampa Tribune]
  • Rays first-round draft pick Justin O’Connor will say thank you to his hometown tonight by signing autographs for free for area little leaguers. [Star-Press]
  • Stacy Long writes about how Matt Sweeney has shortened his swing and become more selective at the plate. Sweeney was one of the pieces of last summer’s Scott Kazmir trade. [Montgomery Advertiser]
  • Former Rays reliever Joe Nelson is pondering retirement after being designated for assignment by the Red Sox. [MLB]
  • A look at how David Price uses his fastball. [DRaysBay]
  • Prospect Henry Wrigley won the FSL home run derby. [Twitter]

DOWN ON THE FARM

  • Check out Rays Prospects for boxscores and more detailed recaps. [Rays Prospects]
  • DURHAM: Carlos Hernandez gave up 5 runs in 5 innings…Desmond Jennings was 2-4 with a triple, 3 runs scored and 3 RBI. He is now 14-26 in his last 6 games and has raised his average to .279…Matt Joyce was 5-5 with 3 doubles and 2 RBI and raised his average to .313.
  • MONTGOMERY: Jake McGee struck out 5 and walked 1 in 6 innings. He gave up 1 run on 5 hits for his second win…Matt Sweeney hit a 2-run home run for Montgomery, his first home run since being promoted.
  • CHARLOTTE: (no game scheduled)
  • BOWLING GREEN: Kirby Yates’ first start of the year was an impressive effort. He struck out 8, walked 3 and allowed just 1 hit in 4 innings…

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17 Comments

  1. Myrna says:

    Kennedy hurts my head too! Where’s Brian Anderson!!! Kennedy is just simply annoying. I don’t know if it’s just me, but I notice that Dwayne appears to be more chipper when Brian is his co-announcer. Over and out.

  2. Don says:

    Whether you “like” him or not… Kennedy is the most knowledgeable broadcaster we have..the others probably have better personalities… but can tell you nothing!

  3. Don says:

    I almost forgot…after a week (short period) with San Fran…Burrell is hitting .375, playing left field everyday….. with 0 errors…
    Wonder if Rays coaching missed something?

    • Matt C says:

      Love you Don, but you’re not suggesting joe Maddon should have benched Carl Crawford for Pat Burrell are you?

      • brian H says:

        0 errors, not hard to have zero errors when your standing still running.

      • Don says:

        Hey Matt, You not going to believe this…there is another corner outfield position called right field..which we haven’t had a decent one since Zo took over recently, and that was because Rodz. at 2nd…
        What if Zo played 2nd last year, Burrell played RF and hit .275, and Aybar was DH….You think we would have been any better??
        Did coaching miss this option??

        • Beth says:

          Don, my head is spinning.
          Are you saying they gave up on Burrell too quickly?

          • Don says:

            I’m saying he got let go by a team on which he couldn’t hit .200, and a manager who REFUSED to let him play in the outfield….
            To a team where he is playing outfield everyday (0 errors) and hitting .375 since he left here…Whats the deal??

          • Alex says:

            Don you actually think errors in the outfield are an accurate explanation of fielding prowess? Do you realize how little ground Burrell covers?

  4. Connie says:

    I was thinking that too but could be any factors though…being more involved in the game not DHing, home cookin’, who knows.
    Rays definitely gave him enough time to try to figure it out.

  5. Brixology says:

    What’s Ruggiano’s option situation? Wouldn’t he be a potential solution to the Bartlett roster space issue? Or do we need the outfielders?

    • Cork Gaines says:

      Good point and certainly a possibility. The Rays could use Zobrist/Rodriguez in RF/2B against lefties. Depends on how much depth they feel like they need against lefties.

  6. Kelley says:

    What a sad game. I guess I knew we wouldn’t always be in 1st place but it hurts when my husband heard that 15-16 games ago we were 6 games up and now we’re tied. I had forgotten we were 6 games ahead of the Yankees at one point. Hope we can turn it around…

  7. Joe D. says:

    I don’t blame Maddon for not playing Burrell in RF, when he was in philly her was known as a sub par LF, then he shows up to Port Charlotte 30lbs overweight, and has neck troubles. Now it’s Maddon’s fault for not puting him in RF, a position considered more demanding than the LF he was used to playing, and wasn’t considered good at?

    How about this the hell with CC not being comfortable in CF, put him out there, and Upton, with the big arm in RF, then you can ‘hide’ a guy on LF.

    Or even more novel, Burrell signs his $17MM contract takes the Rays playoff hopes seriously, shows up in the best shape of his life, learns RF from hard season of training with (insert old coach name here) and insists Joe Maddon gives him a shot at OF playing time

    None of that happened he sowed up Fat, got injured, sucked, and the Rays are stuck with the bill of his laziness.

  8. MJ says:

    If anyone is to blame for Burrell’s sh!tastic play, its Burrell.

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