What can Joe say about a game when the most interesting part was seeing Merlot Joe going all Billy Martin and trying to toss all four umps after he himself got run, then Merlot Joe made a curtain call to get in some more choice words?

Joe hopes the good Rays skipper would save those choice words for his players and a special member of his staff whose name matches a veteran local sports scribe.

It’s back to the 2011 version of the Devil Rays (sigh). Jeff Niemann channeled his inner No Game Shields and gave up a couple of first inning homers to put the Rays in a bad hole early.

Joe kept hoping that somehow the Rays would find their bats like Friday night and rally, and it seemed that may take place until the second run was waived and Merlot Joe put on a little show.

After that it sure seemed inevitable what the result would be.

Four hits. Four hits!

Oh, look: the good people of Chicago packed Comiskey Park on a rare, gorgeous April afternoon of 82 degrees, some 23,000 filed into the Sox southside shrine. Joe’s willing to walk out on a limb and guess not one word of lousy attendance will be uttered on The Score or AM1000 tomorrow. Or on BSPN tonight in between their breathless gushing over the serial adulterer Eldrick Woods, as if he’s Brooklyn Decker wearing some slinky number, who played in The Munsters today.



  1. Indiana Rays Boy says:

    White Sox park is US Cellular Field not Comiskey Park.

  2. Joe Rays Fan says:


    Comiskey Park will always be Comiskey Park to Joe. When companies want to start shelling out cash to Joe, he will start using the corporate names.

  3. Hosstyle in Tampa says:

    The final round of the Masters is much more exciting than watching the Rays. Trust me…

  4. Edward says:

    I believe Maddon or Shelton are on the hot seat. This team just cant seem to win games without getting one run. Im sick and tired of this BS.

    • Scot says:

      Maddon is on the hot seat? If this were the Dodgers, Yankees or Mets, yes, but it is pretty unlikely that Andrew and the crew will toss Maddon based on fewer than 10 games (or even 25). Maddon has one 2 division championships when neither team was expected to win.

      And this team is unlikely to fire Shelton given that last year it out produced the number of runs given the number of hits/walks it generated.

  5. LOL WOB says:

    In speaking with a friend of mine that has been a professional hitting coach his feeling is we can all sit tight on the Shelton issue until about 30 games have been played and/or everyday players gets at least 100 AB’s. Anything sooner than that is considered “panic”. I hate to hear that because I think Gary’s “brother” needs to go, but it may be reality as (if this keeps up) someone will have to fall in sword regardless of last year’s stats if the situation stays the same.
    This is all painful. If we were competitive that would be one thing, but we aren’t even THAT.

  6. Scot says:

    The Rays value for batted-balls-in-play (BABIP) is .195. This means the Rays currently are unbelievable unlucky as batters. Regardless of the pitcher/defense, the expected value is about .300.

    What is really not encouraging is NOT the hitting, but the pitching/defense. Currently it is a shade below 5 when the league average is closer to just above 4. By the way, the Red Sox is over 7 Runs allowed per 9 innings.

    And finally, for all those who are now in love with BJ Upton, his BABIP is .333, which means he is only a bit on the lucky side.

    Still we are all talking about small sample size.

    • David says:

      For the love of all that is good and holy, there may be no crappier stat than BABIP for hitters.

      When you roll over and hit a slow rolling ground ball, there is not a single place on the infield you could get a hit on it.

      When you pop one up in the infield there is no place to get a hit.

      When you hit a 260 foot high flyball, there is no place on the field to get a hit.

      The Rays have a low BABIP because they are hitting weakly, not because they are unlucky. When I start seeing them singe the ball into outs they will be unlucky. Until then, they just suck.

      It’s the same stupid argument that Shields is unlucky because he gives up a metric shit-ton of home runs. No! He gives up a metric shit-ton of home runs because he is serving up meatballs to power hitters.

      • Scot says:

        Yes – this was a shock to those nerds and other statistics wienies that believe that a pitcher has a significant influence on the ball once connection is made with the bat and the ball falls into play. Amazingly, those math geeks who live in their parents basement were wrong. It was only after a great deal of effort that BABIP was shown to be slightly influenced by the pitcher/defense, but even then, it often feel into the noise spectrum. The sabrnerds were not vindicated. Luck and humanism triumph and the connection between parents and children lives on.

        • David says:

          You do realize that when the bat strikes a ball, the x,y and z vectors are not a randomized event like you’re playing Atari baseball? Right?

          • Tone says:

            What is the point in arguing? The team is 1-8. A really really bad 1-8. Whatever science or philosophy you follow does not change the fact that this team has not hit. They look terrible at the plate. Weak ground outs/weak pop outs=SUCKsuckSUCKsuck…ect…

        • Derek says:

          Wait, what???? I’ve never heard a stat geek claim a pitcher has a lot of influence on a ball after it is put into play…. never.

          Defense plays a large role in babip. I’d like to see an argument against that. Because an argument for it would be Sam Fuld.

          Weren’t you the guy praising the Rays for their team of nerds? Now you discount them…

      • Derek says:

        In both cases (BJ and Shields) this is what you get when you look at only one stat and claim it to be the word of god.

        The problem is, that most people who use stats today have no idea what formula was used in the stat, so they don’t know what’s wrong with FIP or whatever.

        BABIP is more useful when used to evaluate pitchers.

        And for the sake of argument, I calculated BJ’s xBABIP to be .299

  7. St. Aug Ryan says:

    As much as I hate to see this happening, I don’t see it getting much better. As I have been saying, there are way too many guys in the lineup that are just role players. As many good decisions the front office has made in the past, they have been fooled by what they had. This is a historical bad offense. With this lineup this is what we are going to get. Time to pull the old Devil Rays gear out.

  8. TpaBayFlyFisher says:

    Fly turned the game off and felt much better rooting for a South African golfer………

  9. Don says:

    Golf vs. Baseball (Rays) announcing….
    I can’t figure what makes me drink more “tiger Woods is the greatest golfer of all time” Or “Isn’t that Joe maddon doing a great job…hes one of the best managers in base ball”…its a toss up…. makes me want to throw up….or we could play who hits the bottom first???? or have they?

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