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: Matt Garza continues to roll, holding the A’s to 1 run in 7.2 innings. It was the the 5th time in his last 8 starts that Garza allowed 0 or 1 run. His ERA since the All-Star break is 2.66…Evan Longoria. Dirtbag is doing what great players are supposed to do. He has picked this team up and is carrying them to October. His 2-run double in the 6th broke a 1-1 tie. It was his 8th extra-base hit in the last 6 games.
THE BAD: Ben Zobrist. Another 0-4 including a strikeout with one out and a runner on base and an inning-ending double-play in the 4th. He is hitting just .175 in the second-half (.308 OBP).
THE TELLING: As expected, Jeremy Hellickson was sent back to the minors (single-A Charlotte). He was replaced by Dale Thayer. Hellickson will work out of the bullpen in anticipation of returning to the Rays next week…Wade Davis will start tomorrow and Jeff Niemann will start Wednesday…Jake McGee picked up his first career save for the Durham Bulls. McGee is likely to be a September addition to the bullpen and many consider him a closer-in-waiting…The Durham Bulls clinched the South Division title this weekend…According to CoolStandings.com the Rays have a 93.3% chance of making the playoffs. The Red Sox are at 10.5%.
WHERE THEY STAND: The Rays are 76-48, 1 game behind the Yankees and 5.5 games ahead of the Red Sox in the Wild Card (6 games in the loss column). After 124 games in 2008, the Rays were 76-48.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Manny Ramirez came off the DL on Saturday. This is important because he can only be traded if he is exposed to waivers. And he can only be exposed to waivers if he is on the active roster…Marc Topkin examines the Rays interest in Manny. [St. Pete Times]
- Evan Longoria discusses yesterday’s game (Video). [The Heater]
- Former Rays manager Lou Piniella retired after 23 seasons as a manager. [Chicago Tribune]
- In happier news, Vin Scully will return next year to the Dodgers broadcast booth. We have said this before, but other than being able to see the Rays anywhere we are, the best part of the baseball TV packages is that Vin Scully tells us a bedtime story every night. [Bright House Sports]
- The Rays spent the 7th most ($21.1 million) on draft signing bonuses in the last 3 years…Of course, having the top pick one year and 4 of the top 70 picks another year will tend to increase the amount a team will spend. [St. Pete Times]
- Just how bad was the Bucs attendance on Saturday? [Joe Bucs Fan]
- Here is a look at Evan Longoria’s MVP hopes. [Baseball Prospectus]
- Matt Moore is a strikeout machine and he comes in at #6 in last week’s “Prospect Hot Sheet.” [Baseball America]
- Susan Slusser writes that the A’s will have the money this winter to pursue Carl Crawford or Carlos Pena. [San Francisco Chronicle]
- We have no idea what the Mayors’ salaries have to do with the Rays or the Tampa-St. Pete rivalry, but Sue Carlton thinks it is relevant. [St. Pete Times]
- Several teammates took Matt Garza to The Venue after his no-hitter. [Tampa Bay Times]
- Whit Watson takes a look at the Rays double-A affiliate, the Montgomery Biscuits (Video). [FS Florida]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
- Check out Rays Prospects for boxscores and more detailed recaps. [Rays Prospects]
- DURHAM: Bobby Livingston made his second start since being picked up by the Rays. He gave up 6 runs (5 earned) in 5 innings. He struck out 4 and walked 1…Jake McGee (2004-5) picked up his first save for the Bulls with a 1-2-3 9th inning…Brian Shouse continues to struggle, giving up 2 runs in 2 innings while walking 4.Rocco Baldelli (2000-1) doubled and hit his 2nd home run with the Bulls…Dioner Navarro went 3-4 to raise his average to .291…Desmond Jennings (2006-10) went 0-4 but did steal his 34th base.
- MONTGOMERY: Paul Phillips made his first start of the year after 37 relief appearances. He pitched 5 shutout innings, giving up just 1 hit and no walks. He struck out 4…Nevin Ashley went 4-4 with a walk and his 6th home run. He drove in 5.
- CHARLOTTE: Frank de los Santos picked up his 10th win, holding Palm Beach to 1 run in 7 innings. He struck out 4…Tim Beckham (2008-1) went 1-4 with a walk…Matt Hall (2008-10) hit his 3rd home run.
- BOWLING GREEN: Alex Colome worked just 3 innings for the second straight start since coming off the DL. He allowed 2 runs on 4 hits, striking out 4…Julio Cedeno had 3 hits and drove in 4. He also stole his 4th base…Ty Morrison (2008-4) was 3-6, scored 3 times and stole 2 bases, his 45th and 46th.
- HUDSON VALLEY: James Patterson (2010-18) gave up 4 runs in 3.1 innings, striking out 3 and walking 3…Derek Dietrich (2010-2) in his first action in a month, went 2-5 with a pair of doubles.
- PRINCETON: Victor Mateo gave up 5 runs in 2 innings raising his ERA to 5.45.