THE GOOD: James Shields. Anybody still think Shields’ performance is all luck? Another 8 innings, 1 run, 6 hits, 12 Ks and only 1 walk. He once again leaned heavily on his curve and change showing this his newfound success may be attributed to a new approach. In his last 3 starts, Shields has thrown 26 innings, giving up just 2 runs on 14 hits and 4 walks, with 28 Ks…Kelly Shoppach. The Rays one huge defensive inefficiency this season has been the inability to throw out basestealers. But in the 8th, with the Rays still protecting a 1-0 lead, Shoppach came through after Shields gave up a leadoff single…Matt Joyce. His solo home run looked for a while like it would be enough. It was his second straight game with a home run. He then scored the game-winner in the 10th on a wild pitch.
THE BAD: Unconventional DP. With 1 run in already in the 5th, and the Rays threatening to break the game open with runners on first and third and just 1 out, Joe Maddon had Felipe Lopez moving with the pitch. The result was Kelly Shoppach striking out and Lopez being called out at second base on batter’s interference. So in an attempt to avoid the double-play, Maddon ran right into one…Kryptonite. Sam Fuld is mired in an 0-18 skid.
THE TELLING: Alex Cobb will indeed start today’s game, making his big league debut. Jake McGee was demoted to triple-A and must stay in the minors for at least 10 days before he can be recalled…It took the Rays 18 games to go from 1-8 to tied for the Wild Card lead in the AL.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Marc Topkin suggests Brandon Gomes as a possibility to be called up to replace Alex Cobb after today’s game and Felipe Lopez could be cut when Evan Longoria is back on Tuesday. [TampaBay.com]
- This is a week old, but David Price has shown the biggest jump in fastball velocity as compared to April of a year ago. Wade Davis has had one of the biggest dropoffs in velocity. [The House that Dewey Built]
- Carlos Pena finished April without any home runs, only 5 RBI, and spent the last 2 days benched. [Chicago Sun-Times]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
- DURHAM12, Indianapolis 3: Edgar Gonzalez pitched 5 shutout innings, striking out 4 and walking 1…Cory Wade struck out 5 in 2 shutout innings…RF Brandon Guyer added another multi-hit game, his 5th in the last 8 games, by going 2-5. He is hitting .375…DH Chris Carter was 3-6 with his 2nd home run in 2 days…1B Leslie Anderson was 2-4 and is hitting .214…C Robinson Chirinos went 0-5 with 3 strikeouts…CF Desmond Jennings had a single a a walk and added his 7th stolen base.
- Jakcsonville 7, MONTGOMERY 5: Chris Archer continues to struggle in double-A. Yesterday he gave up 4 runs (3 earned) in 4 innings. On the year, he has allowed 15 earned runs in 22.2 innings (5.96 ERA) on 31 hits and 10 walks. He has struck out 23…Evan Longoria homered and walked in 4 triples to the plate…SS Tim Beckham was 1-4 with a walk…C Stephen Vogt had 3 hits including his 2nd home run…1B Matt Sweeney hit his 4th home run, but only has 5 other hits this season and is hitting .134.
- CHARLOTTE 5, Fort Myers 4: Chris Andujar gave up 4 runs in 5.1 innings on 8 hits and 2 walks. He struck out 1…SS Hak-Ju Lee went 1-3 with a walk. He also committed his second error…2B Tyler Bortnick was 1-4 and 1B Greg Sexton went 2-3 with a double. He is hitting .356 in 22 games.
- BOWLING GREEN 2, Great Lakes 0: After two straight rough outings, Enny Romero rebounded with 7 strikeouts in 5 shutout innings. He did walk 4.