THE GOOD: Longoria Leading Off. Joe Maddon wanted to give Evan Longoria a “different mental approach,” so he had Dirtbag leading off for the first time in his career. The result was a first inning single and a third inning home run. It was just his third home run of the year. And once again, Maddon looks like a mad genius for helping Longoria bust out of his slump.
THE BAD: Longoria Leading Off. Evan Longoria singled in the first inning. Nobody was on base because he was leading off. In the third inning, Longoria homered. It was a solo shot because Sam Fuld and Kelly Shoppach batted in front of him and those two weren’t on base. So, is Maddon a mad genius? Or did he cost the Rays a few runs?
THE TELLING: James Shields picked off his sixth runner of the season…Jeff Niemann will throw a simulated game today. There is still no set schedule for his return.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- JP Howell is struggling. [TampaBay.com]
- Marc Topkin takes a look at some areas where the Rays can improve the roster. [TampaBay.com]
- As expected, prospect Richard de los Santos had surgery and is done for the year. [Montgomery Advertiser]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
- DURHAM @ Toledo: (postponed)
- Jacksonville 10, MONTGOMERY 8: Joe Cruz struck out 8 in just 5 innings, giving up 1 run on 7 hits and 1 walk…SS Tim Beckham was 3-4 with a double, raising his average to .311. He did commit his 7th error and was picked off.
- Tampa 4, CHARLOTTE 2: Merrill Kelly allowed 4 runs (3 earned) in 5 innings, striking out 3 and walking 3…SS Hak-Ju Lee was 0-4 with 2 Ks.
- Lansing 3, BOWLING GREEN 2: Braulio Lara gave up 3 runs in 5.1 innings…CF Cody Rogerswas 2-5 with a double and a triple…2B Robby Price was 1-3 with 2 walks.
Why is Adam Russell catching Avril Lavigne’s first pitch? Is he a Sk8ter Boi?