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: Hellboy IV. Tonight, the immovable object meets the unstoppable force. The Rays are 2-13 in their last 15 Friday games. But the Rays will send Jeremy Hellickson will take his 3-0 record to the mound. Great pitchers prevent losing streaks. It’s time for Hellboy to be great…Evan Longoria. Dirtbag continues to rake, picking up 2 more hits and his 17th home run. He now has 8 hits in the last 3 games and 17 in the last 10.
THE BAD: CooCoo Crisp. Damn we hate that guy. With 1 run already in and the Rays holding a 3-1 lead. Crisp robbed Matt Joyce of a 2-run home run that would have likely put the game out of reach…Going Cold. This offense sure picks some terrible times to go cold. After Oakland took the lead in the bottom of the 6th, BJ Upton led off the 7th with a single. Reid Brignac then swung at the first pitch without giving Upton a chance to steal second, and grounded into a double-play. Upton would end up being the Rays last baserunner…Dan Wheeler. We’re not going to rag on the guy too hard because usually he gets the job done. But you have to kinda expect the occasional implosion. You just hope those don’t cost the Rays wins. Last night it did…Dan Johnson. In 12 games, Johnson is now 4-35 (.114). He does have 14 walks which is nice. But we warned you not to get too excited.
THE TELLING: BJ Upton’s 10-game hitting streak matches a career-high…Jeff Niemann and Wade Davis will pitch in a simulated game today…Chad Qualls is absent from the team due to a death in the family…The Pepsi Refresh Project awarded the Rays a $5,000 grant for the Moffitt Cancer Center. The Twins won the big prize.
WHERE THEY STAND: The Rays are 74-47, 1 game behind the Yankees and 5.5 games ahead of the Red Sox. After 121 games in 2008, the Rays were 74-47.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Brad Hawpe, a 2009 All-Star, will become a free agent on Monday. Ken Rosenthal lists the Rays as a potential landing spot. [Twitter]
- The Rays are not the only local team with attendance issues. [Joe Bucs Fan]
- Grant Balfour says he is ahead of schedule and will be ready in a week or so, but admits the Rays may wait until Sept.1 to bring him back. [St. Pete Times]
- John Romano argues that the Rays are handling Jeremy Hellickson the right way. [St. Pete Times]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
- Check out Rays Prospects for boxscores and more detailed recaps. [Rays Prospects]
- DURHAM: Darin Downs made his first start for the pitching-starved Bulls, giving up 4 runs in 4 innings on 8 hits…Brian Shouse gave up 3 hits and a walk in 1.2 scoreless innings…Winston Abreu picked up his 19th save with a scoreless 9th…Desmond Jennings (2006-10) had 2 singles and 2 walks, scoring 3 times…Leslie Anderson hit his first home run since being promoted.
- MONTGOMERY: Alex Torres struck out 8 in 5.2 innings, giving up 3 runs on 5 hits and 3 walks…Nevin Ashley (2006-6) had 2 of the Biscuits 3 hits and hit his 5th home run.
- CHARLOTTE: Joe Cruz picked up his 12th win after giving up 1 run in 5 innings…Tim Beckham (2008-1) went 3-6 and Stephen Vogt (2007-12) was 1-3.
- BOWLING GREEN: Albert Suarez struck out 6 in 4 innings, giving up 2 runs on 2 his and a walk…Brett Nommensen (2009-8) hit his 10th home run and Ryan Wiegand (2009-25) added his 9th.
- HUDSON VALLEY: Miguel Sierra gave up just 1 run in 5.1 innings. He struck out 3 and walked none.
- PRINCETON: (postponed)