The GBT – The Good, The Bad and The Telling sandwich, where The Bad is nice and lean and the The Telling is ripe.

Red Sox 8, Devil Rays 5

THE GOOD: BJ Upton. He wasn’t benched, but he wasn’t in the starting lineup. And while grabbing some pine, BJ managed to find another gear. Pinch-hitting in the 8th, Bossman legged out a triple on a ball hit to left field. Not an easy thing to do in Fenway.

THE BAD: James Shields. In the 5th inning of a tie game with 2 outs and David Ortiz due up, Joe Maddon visited James Shields on the mound. Certainly JoeMa reminded Shields that first base was open and not to give Big Papi anything good to hit. What Maddon didn’t tell Shields to do was to groove a first-pitch, fastball right. down. the. middle. of. the. effin’. plate. And just like that the Red Sox were leading 3-0 and never looked back…Carl Crawford’s Sore Arm. On Monday Joe Maddon indicated that there was only a 60-40 chance CC would even play and indicated that if he did play, it would be as the DH. Well, not only did he start, he was in left field. And when Crawford needed a strong throw home on a sac fly, it sure didn’t look like his arm was 100%, as he short-armed it a bit and barely reached the cutoff from shallow left. Let’s hope this isn’t a lingering problem that eventually lands Crawford on the DL…Upton’s Rep. The damage has been done. Even if Upton goes on to post all-star numbers the rest of the season, Evan Longoria will get all the credit. And that’s too bad.

THE TELLING: The Rays are 9-12 in their last 21 games. Since May 23, the Red Sox have made up 9.5 games in the standings on the Rays…Pat Burrell hit his 5th home run in just 61 at bats for the Giants. He had 2 in 84 at bats with the Rays. In 70 plate appearances with the Giants, Burrell has been on base 29 times (.414 OBP). In 96 PAs with the Rays, he was on base a total of 28 times (.292)…

WHERE THEY STAND: The Rays are 44-32, 3 games behind the Yankees and 2 games behind the Red Sox in the Wild Card. After 76 games in 2008, the Rays were 45-31.

THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA

  • If you missed it late last night, the Rays designated Hank Blalock for assignment and activated Gabe Kapler from the DL. We can’t see Blalock accepting a minor league assignment, so in all likelihood, his time with the Rays is over. [Rays Index]
  • BJ Upton could “possibly” return to the lineup tonight…Also, Carl Crawford admits “throwing is still a little tough.” [St. Pete Times]
  • James Shields discusses the David Ortiz home run (video): “I was trying to throw a fastball about a foot off the plate.” [The Heater]
  • Navin Vaswani is visiting all 30 ballparks in 60 days and writing about his adventure for the Toronto Globe and Mail. Here is his write-up of The Trop. [Globe and Mail]
  • Is this a kid drinking a beer at The Trop? [Deadspin]

DOWN ON THE FARM

  • Check out Rays Prospects for boxscores and more detailed recaps. [Rays Prospects]
  • DURHAM: Virgil Vasquez, who broke both of his wrists during a moped accident, made his first start since April. He gave up 3 runs in 5 innings, striking out 4 and walking none…Aneury Rodriguez pitched 3 innings in his first relief appearance of the season…From the leadoff spot, Desmond Jennings went 2-5 with his first home run of the year. He also struck out 3 times…Dioner Navarro went 0-1 with 2 walks in his first start since being demoted.
  • MONTGOMERY: Jeremy Hall allowed just 1 run in 6 innings on 2 hits and a walk. He struck out 5, lowering his ERA to 3.01…Henry Wrigley went 2-4 with a double in his double-A debut.
  • CHARLOTTE: Joe Cruz pitched 7 shutout innings, striking out 7 and walking 3…Tim Beckham went 2-4 with a walk and Shawn O’Malley was 4-5 with a double and 2 triples.
  • BOWLING GREEN: Kirby Yates gave up 2 runs in 5 innings…Chris Murrill went 1-4 with a double and 2 runs scored…
  • HUDSON VALLEY: Julius Dettrich made his 3rd start and gave up 4 runs in just 3.1 innings…Burt Reynolds went 0-5 with 4 strikeouts.
  • PRINCETON: Braulio Lara picked up his first win with 6 shutout innings. He allowed just 3 hits and no walks while striking out 6…Leonardo Reginatto went 2-4 with 2 doubles.

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19 Comments

  1. Jim says:

    For the life of me, I don’t know why they don’t plunk Ortiz. They way he showboats after every homerun has to piss the pitchers off as much as it does me.

  2. Beth says:

    Ortiz’s home run was huge, but had that been all the Boston scoring the Rays would have had a fighting chance.

    Has Cormier had a clean inning since April? I think he’s become completely ineffective.

  3. Don says:

    I don’t care if CC can’t throw the ball out of his shadow…He is the
    BEST (only) hitter we have!
    Hopefully Maddon will keep Willie Aybar on the bench, I hate to see Home Runs, we have guys like Matt Joyce to DH!
    Pat Burrell story tells me things are not all that happy here in happyville,
    as you all know I was one of his biggest critics but if he can get away from here and do good…..you have to question the situation!

  4. pudieron89 says:

    Maybe in the eyes of the news radio talking heads Longo is the “only reason for BJs success” but that’s garbage and you know it Cork. BJ has historically been a streaky hitter, just earlier this month he had a few games hit streak going with some multihit games mixed in. He’s not a bad hitter, but people give him crap because he’s not the messiah everyone expected him to be coming up to the majors at such a young age. Truth be told, he’s a league-average hitter with great CF defense and he is not deserving of the lambasting he receives from the morons with microphones in the Bay area.

    • Alex says:

      Really? So what happened in 07 when he hit/went .300 24/22. Or 08 when he hit/went .273 9/44 and then tore it up in the playoffs?

      Its pretty simple whats happened to BJ. Its that stupid stance he has at the plate. Harold Renolds did a break down of his swing from the 08 playoffs compared to this year. In the 08 playoffs he was getting his foot down early and getting set before the pitcher even released the ball. This year his foot isn’t even down before the pitcher releases it. So, does our hitting coach suck that much that he can’t figure this out? Maybe. Or is BJ still unconsciously scared of hurting his shoulder (again) so much that he doesn’t swing full out every time?

    • ramedy says:

      Cork said: “Evan Longoria will get all the credit. And that’s too bad.”

      You said: “Maybe in the eyes of the news radio talking heads Longo is the “only reason for BJs success” but that’s garbage and you know it Cork.”

      Yes, he does know it – he said it, in fact. Read completely, breathe, then comment.

      • pudieron89 says:

        yes….and I’m glad he pointed this out. My point is that more people need to realize this and he has the responsibility as an intelligent Rays blogger to make this point aware to some of the casual sports fan in the area who will believe whatever Steve Duemig tells them on the radio.

    • Alex says:

      And you wanna know why people give BJ crap? Because he was the second pick in the draft. When he was in the minors with Elliah Dukes and Delmon Young all three of them complained that they were stuck in the minors because the front office was cheap. So what happened? BJ gets called up and struggles mightly. He struggled for two years trying to hit and find a position until 08. Since then we’ve all seen what he can do when he is trying and when he is healthy. But at least 3 times he’s been benched for lazy play and he has been caught being lazy many more times. Unfortunately our manager has no balls and won’t do a thing about it.

      Fire Maddon

      • pudieron89 says:

        This is absolutely retarded. I understand the frustration because he was a high draft pick, HOWEVER, he is still better than average and we have no one who could replace his defense in CF.

        Also, the Fire Maddon gimmick is cute. Yes, let’s chase the best manager this franchise has ever had. He’s not perfect but he is a hell of a lot smarter and more effective than anyone else we’ve ever had and I highly doubt we could replace him with anyone better.

      • ramedy says:

        Beyond the very true things pudieron says above re: firing Maddon – if you saw what Maddon did to argue the Garza balk a few days ago and still think Maddon is no good, I can’t help you.

  5. Beth says:

    Is Burt Reynolds really a Rays prospect playing in Hudson Valley, or is this a joke?

  6. Michael says:

    We need more things on jennings and McGee. When the tema goes bad, look to the prospects. :)

  7. Pipp says:

    All I can say about baseball today is “Go Gamecocks!”

    At least there was some exciting baseball to watch last night.

  8. John S says:

    BJ isn’t replaceable.. hahaha.. yeah…

    There is a guy named Jennings who can do a better job right now.

    Hell all he would have to do is bat .250 and not get picked off…

    Jennings has more range than Upton but Upton has the stronger arm.

    It won’t really matter about the stronger arm because BJ more than likely with walk to the ball

    • pudieron89 says:

      Jennings doesn’t play CF, numbskull, and he doesn’t hit for power. He’s CC’s replacement and I have no doubt he will do well…next year. There is no reason to start his clock this season, thrust him into the majors and watch him struggle to adjust. And it’s hard to intelligently debate someone who bases their pitiful argument on generalizations.

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