Joe Maddon announced the rotation for all 5 games of the ALDS…

  1. David Price
  2. James Shields
  3. Matt Garza
  4. Wade Davis
  5. David Price

Shields for game 2?

The pros are his experience, his more than a run better home ERA, his 2.57 ERA in 2 starts versus the Rangers (which ignores the 4 unearned runs he allowed) and his 3.52 FIP at home.


Still, no matter what you think of the decision, you shouldn’t be surprised. Maddon has always given his veterans the benefit of the doubt and Shields is one of his guys.

Let’s just hope the Rays aren’t down 1-0 heading into game 2.


  • Today is the last day to enter BJ Upton’s raffle to win his BRayser. [Upton Brothers [Upton Brothers]
  • David Price is on the cover of this week’s Sports Illustrated. This is the third cover for the Rays. [The Heater]
  • Carl Crawford is already talking about the Rays in past-tense: “I loved playing in Tampa Bay…I just didn’t want to leave St. Petersburg with any hard feelings.” [St. Pete Times]
  • According to one projection analysis, the Rays will win the ALDS in 4 games and have a 56.6% shot at winning the opening-round series. [ESPN]
  • Former Devil Ray Jorge Cantu will start in game 1 for the Rangers. [ESPN]
  • Wait. Peter Gammons thinks the Red Sox are a more likely destination for Carl Crawford, than the Angels? Color us shocked! [WEEI]
  • Would the Angels be willing to go to $20 million per season for Carl Crawford? [LA Times]
  • Here is a look at how some local businesses will handle the Rays afternoon playoff games and whether employees will be allowed to attend. [Tampa Bay Business Journal]
  • Sporting News explains why BJ Upton is the key for the Rays in the opening round. [Sporting News]
  • David Price was named the AL Pitcher of the Month. [MLB]
  • The Rays to Nashville? One writer says yes (they do already have teams in the NHL and NFL; thanks Michael). [Washington Examiner]
  • Ken Rosenthal is “tempted” to pick the Rangers in the ALDS, but thinks the Rays will “find a way to win” (Video). [Fox Sports]
  • Jon Paul Morosi calls Joe Maddon the perfect manager for Generation Y. [Fox Sports]
  • Free tickets to game 5 of the ALDS? []
  • Oh Jonny Gomes, we just can’t quit you. [XM MLB Chat]
  • So the players were behind “DJ Kitty”? [St. Pete Times]




  1. Bob says:

    Actually, I believe they extended the deadline for BJ's BRayser until November.

  2. Gus says:

    Shields here reminds me of the Kazmir start(s) v. Boston in the ALCS in 2008. A Maddon special. Maybe he'll produce. Day games at the Trop tend to be better for him at least. Tough break for Neiman, who for whatever reason, doesn't get the benefit of the doubt.

    The Crawford story is all class (but still sad for those of us who watched him come up and have enjoyed his run). Of course someone needs to remind Carl that the Rays will gladly pay him $10M for the next 3 years -- he can always move away later. Florida has low taxes; keep your talents in South Tampa CC.

    The Tom Foley story ("CC you can't play CF") make you glad he's not in charge of minor league talent anymore. Pre-Upton, I never understood the decision to put CC in left.

    • Leighroy says:

      I think the "whatever reason" might be his inconsistency since returning from the DL. Has definitely shown improvement in the most recent starts by comparison to the first few off the DL, but I wouldn't give him a nod over Wade Davis right now by any means.

  3. Don says:

    Classic Maddon showing his veteran (over the hill) players that he believes in them...Remember Maddon sat on the bench for 25 years in LA...he sympathizes with them... when they are about done....other words.... Maddon has a mothers complex...please don't hurt the players feelings....sad!
    Here' the position he puts the Rays In:
    Price 50%/50% vs. C. Lee......If the Rays lose...
    Shields gives up 4/5/6 runs in the 2nd game even if he only pitches 3/4 innings (Maddon will NOT take him out before that)
    Rays then down 2 games... going to Tex..... Series over..
    Even if Rays split in the Trop...then 2 in a row in Tex.... They (Rays) may never see game 5!

  4. John says:

    Price on the cover of SI? And it's not even an action shot; he POSED for this! Does the man not know history??? What ever happened to baseball being a superstitious game??? We are doomed, Doomed, DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMED!!!!

  5. John S says:

    Ha Peter Gammons should really just stop he is ruining his legacy.

    Crawford is talking past tense that is unfortunate. Well we will have a lot of draft picks this year in the first 2 rounds? Hopefully they take the money the will get from the playoff games and put it aside for the rookie contracts. Lucky for us the draft this upcoming year is LOADED!

    Sadly for us we can NOT trade draft picks. Hell we could have 6-7 picks in the first 1st and supplemental picks. Imagine if we could trade up in the top 2-3 and pick off one of the super elite prospects.

    This previous draft the Rays did some good work as it turns out. It hit some of the need areas. Luckily for us the next 7-8 years we are set with quality starting pitching (In 2 years we will see the next wave of blue chip pitching prospects). How many teams can say that? Not many if any at all.

  6. sunrisejeff says:

    Makes Game One a must win for us for sure imo. I think Shields is very capable of pitching a good game for us but I'll feel a lot better about it if we are up 1-0 at the time of first pitch.

  7. Alex says:

    Maddon is doing it so he can act like he's the smartest person in the room as he always does. If Shields pitches well, he can go "Ha I knew old Jamesy would pitch a gem". If he pitches like crap Maddon will make up some dumb excuse as he always does.


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