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

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THE GOOD:Jeremy Hellickson. Hellboy was everything a Rays fan could have hoped for. 7 innings, only 3 hits and 2 runs. 6 Ks and only 2 walks. He threw 107 pitches and got 14 swinging strikes. Six of those on his changeup. His fastball reached 93 and he threw 14 of his 17 curveballs for strikes. His fourth pitch, the slider, was thrown only 2 times. All-in-all, a great debut…Matt Joyce. In his last 13 starts, Joyce is 13-42 with 5 doubles, 4 home runs and he drove in 15. And his 2-run double in the 5th last night gave the Rays a 4-1 lead that they wouldn’t relinquish…BJ Upton. Bossman had 2 singles and a double. He also added 3 stolen bases giving him 7 total bases for the game.

THE BAD: Aggressive Running. This is not that bad, because we love the aggressive baserunning. But if the Rays are going to be aggressive, sometimes it will cost them outs. Last night, both Matt Joyce and Jason Bartlett were thrown out trying to steal. Joyce’s killed a rally in the 2nd and Bartlett’s kept the 5th inning from being even bigger.

THE TELLING: The Rays have now won 8 of 9… Ben Zobrist expects to be able to pinch-hit tonight and return to the lineup tomorrow…To clarify our comments yesterday, Andy Sonnanstine must spend at least 5 days on the DL (max 10 days backdating). If he had been demoted, he would be required to spend at least 10 days in the minors…More evidence that Matt Joyce is Carlos Pena-lite: Joyce has 14 extra-base hits and just 7 singles…If the Rays go just 29-28 in the final 57 games, the Red Sox would still have to go 35-21 just to tie.

WHERE THEY STAND: The Rays are 66-39, tied for first place in the AL East and 6.5 games ahead of the Red Sox in the Wild Card. After 105 games in 2008, the Rays were 61-44.

THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA

  • Jeremy Hellickson claims he was nervous. We didn’t see it (Video). [The Heater]
  • Andrew Friedman talks about the trade deadline (Video). [Tampa Tribune]
  • Gary Shelton writes about Jeremy Hellickson’s debut and his future with the Rays. [St. Pete Times]
  • Jim Hickey on the Grant Balfour injury: “Oh my God, I felt like throwing up on the field…I was nauseous. I’m still sick to my stomach”…Also, Matt Garza was named the AL Co-Player of the Week. [St. Pete Times]
  • Matt Moore was named the FSL Pitcher-of-the-Week for the 2nd consecutive week. [Rays Prospects]
  • Jon Paul Morosi breaks down the deadline deals. [Fox Sports]
  • MLB Trade Rumors lists Dioner Navarro, Lance Cormier and Gabe Kapler as waiver-wire candidates for August. [MLB Trade Rumors]
  • Rays are third in the Chicago Tribune power rankings, behind a team they just beat 2 of 3 and another that is bankrupt. [Chicago Tribune]
  • They are second in the ESPN.com Power Rankings. [ESPN]
  • Rays Prospects has some pictures from a recent Stone Crabs game. [Rays Prospects]
  • If the Rays were a beer, what kind of beer would they be (thanks Ryan)? [Jetpacks and Halftime Snacks]

DOWN ON THE FARM

  • Check out Rays Prospects for boxscores and more detailed recaps. [Rays Prospects]
  • DURHAM: Brian Baker dropped to 7-2 after giving up 10 runs (9 earned) in 3 innings on 8 hits and 4 walks…Dioner Navarro went 2-4 with a pair of doubles…Desmond Jennings (2006-10) was 0-4 with 2 Ks.
  • MONTGOMERY: Jeremy Hall pitched 6 shutout innings with 5 strikeouts and 1 walk. His ERA is 3.38…Leslie Anderson went 1-4 with a walk and is hitting .311…Henry Wrigley (2005-14) was 1-3 with a walk.
  • CHARLOTTE: (games suspended)
  • BOWLING GREEN: Kyle Lobstein (2008-2) struck out 6 and walked none, but gave up 7 runs (4 earned) including 2 home runs in 6.2 innings. His ERA is now 4.54…Cody Rogers (2009-7) went 0-5 with 2 strikeouts as his average falls to .253…Ryan Wiegand (2009-25) went 2-4 with a double and his 7th home run.
  • HUDSON VALLEY: Wilmer Almonte allowed just 1 unearned run in 5 innings, striking out 2 and walking 2…Robby Price (2010-13) was 2-4 with a double and is hitting .304…Phil Wunderlich (2010-12) went 3-4 and he is hitting .338.
  • PRINCETON: Jacob Partridge (2009-18) gave up 5 runs in 4 innings.
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8 Comments

  1. Gus says:

    If the performances of Hellickson and Joyce the past two weeks don't convince management to give the AAA guys a shot to help the big club win the title, then I'm not sure they can be convinced.

    Hopefully Dan Johnson can produce this week.

    What you see with great teams is internal competition makes everybody better. Rays have that. Hopefully Kapler and Aybar realize that their slots on the post-season roster are not a given and they either pick it up of someone else gets a chance.

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  2. Gatorbuc15 says:

    Hellickson will be called back up to pitch in the bullpen. Dan will be a better fit at first than S-ROD.

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  3. Don says:

    There is a difference in "aggressive base running" and all out risk taking.. for what?... Bartlett and Joyce? come on...
    I bet... put outs on the bases have cost the Rays more runs than have helped...except for CC...and Jaso is the smartest base runner by far...no Bartlett and Joyce please.............. stay where you are!

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    • MJ says:

      Ive read studies (and I can't remember where now) stating that the value of a SB isn't nearly as high as most people think. However, it can't take things into account like how it affects the pitcher (ie focus, slide step, pitch selection, etc) and I don't think they really accounted for defensive positioning, or even errors (catcher's throw). I'd like to go back and see how runners that scored after stealing a base were driven in over the course of a season or something, but thats too much work for me.

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  4. John S says:

    Best part is we did not see the cutter or the slurve at all. Wel maybe the slurve once

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  5. Brixology says:

    Does Dan Johnson have options remaining? I thought he was out. If he doesn't, are they going to have to waive him when Sonny comes off the DL?

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    • Brian H says:

      options refer to years not amount of times you are optioned. someone with one option can be sent to minors and majors as many times as needed for the year.

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