A disgusting game, a disgusting loss.

What has happened to “Big Game” Shields? Of late, he’s been slipping back into “No Game.”

Stellar pitching coach Jim Hickey tweaked Shields’ mechanics in the offseason and it was like there was a new pitcher. Shields, for the most part, has been dominant this season.

But of late, save for his dynamite three-hit, one-walk complete game shutout of the Florida Fish not quite two weeks ago, Shields has been having flashes of his nasty habit of giving up tons of home runs. In his last 44 1/3 innings, he has been tagged for seven homers.

Aside from his perfect game, that’s seven home runs in 35 1/3 innings. That’s borderline atrocious. And that’s what got the Rays in a hole early tonight.

The way the offense has grown impotent and very Derek Shelton-like of late, it’s imperative for Rays pitchers to not let the game get out of hand like it did in Seattle. It wouldn’t hurt if Felipe Lopez could catch, either.

There was one positive out of this stench. Matty Joyce hit his third home run against a lefty. Friends, Joyce is simply an everyday player and has proven it. This shouldn’t even be an issue any longer much less a concern. Right now he is the Rays best hitter and you do not pull your best hitter over this mixing and matching juggling.

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6 Comments

  1. Michael says:

    Maybe it's just easier to notice but it seems like we always have our huge offensive games when our pitchers are awesome and we always have our terrible pitching games when our hitting is terrible.

    If we had a few of those 7 runs games for an AAAndy Sonnenstine start, we might still be on top of this division.

    Pitching is irrelevant. We could clone Cy Young and Cliff Lee a few times but we're not going to get anywhere when if we can't plate 4 runs a game.

    We need to rock the boat before the all star break to save this ship.

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  2. Joe says:

    I see this as one bad start. His start against the Indians, he gave up 3 runs by the end of the 2nd including a HR, he went on to pitch 5 more scoreless innings.

    Today was awful but name one pitcher who doesn't have games like this. Price has had like 3 already.

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  3. Tone says:

    Please shake up this roster! Shoppach, Reid, Lopez, and Ruggiano are 4 spots that could easily be replaced by 4 guys in AAA(although Reid can wait for EJ to come back).
    1) Desmond Jennings/Brandon Guyer
    2) Russ Canzler/Leslie Anderson/Chris Carter
    3) Jose Lobaton/Robinson Chirinos

    Any one of those mentioned above is better(can't be worse) than what they are putting out there right now. Shoppach still on this team is insanity at its purest form. What does a guy got to do to prove he sucks? Continue to throw bats into the stands? Swing and miss at every pitch?
    Lunacy I tell you, straight up lunacy.

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  4. LoLJFH says:

    Please tell me, someone, anyone, why Reid and Shelly are in the lineup - and together! Just give the other team 2 easy outs back-to-back, huh? How many weeks now, Maddon, have you been saying "they'll be fine, I really like their fight and their at-bats, they're coming around"? Too freaking many! They, along with Jason in a PH role, went 0-8 with 6 K's! Having not watched the game I guess Shopp was late swinging his bat everytime a fastball was thrown and Reid was swinging like he was chipping a 9-iron. Tone and Michael can see it, we can see it, MLB Network can see it. JoeMa?? I wonder what part of all of this is "the extra 2%"? I know Maddon's hands are tied if top management says guys aren't ready and he has no other options, but come on...

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  5. Matt says:

    He changed his name back to big blast!

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