Rays 7, Indians 0
Red Sox 4, Rays 2 (click image for boxscore)

The GBT – The Good, The Bad and The Telling sandwich, where The Bad is nice and lean and the The Telling is ripe.

THE GOOD: David Price. Yes, he got pounded and was out of the game after 5 innings. But when the right situation presented itself (first base open), he plunked Kevin Youkilis. And now we know that the Rays were just blowing smoke when they said Youkilis spiking Casey Kotchman was unintentional. And just in case you want to watch Youk getting spanked, over and over, this is for youCasey At The Bat. Lucky. This is an awfully long lucky streak. Casey Kotchman homered and is now hitting .339.

THE BAD: David Price. One of those nights. Price can get away without his best stuff against the Blue Jays, but not against the Red Sox. It took him 106 pitches just to get through 5 innings as he walked 5 and allowed 3 runs. Guess we can take away that “Big Game” nickname. Oh wait. Nevermind…The Non-Closer Non-Save. Let’s ignore for a second that Kyle Farnsworth is not the official closer (he is). We have ALWAYS hated using closers in non-save situations. There is something about the intensity of the save that leads to closers letting up in non-save situations (queue 3,000 words on why this is not true from a website that thinks the game is played by robots). And Farnsworth was the latest casualty, giving up a home run in the top of the 9th. When the Rays got two on in the bottom of the 9th, scoring one run would have been a lot more doable than scoring two…Top O’ The Order To Nowhere. The Rays top 4 hitters in the lineup were 0-15 with 3 strikeouts and 1 walk. In the series they were 2-37 (.054) with 7 strikeouts.

THE TELLING: Matt Moore. Did you hear?…ESPN’s “Baseball Tonight” crew on the umpire warning both team after David Price hit Kevin Youkilis: “We have no idea why [the warning] happened.” *payingattentionfail*…Cory Wade tossed 2 more socreless innings for the Yankees. But yeah, the Rays bullpen was too good to fit Wade in someplace *smh*…

THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA

  • Chris Carter was released by the Rays. Like Cory Wade, he likely had an opt-out date if he wasn’t yet in the majors. [Watching Durham Bulls Baseball]
  • The Mets GM confirmed that he will consider signing Scott Kazmir…There is no way this will end well. [NY Post]
  • I hate saying anything nice about Boston sports, but they are the new Title Town. [Business Insider]
  • Our new favorite golfer. It is the Kenny Powers of the PGA. [Business Insider]

DOWN ON THE FARM

  • Gwinnett 10, DURHAM 2: Jay Buente was pounded for 8 runs (7 earned) in just 2.2 innings…CF Desmond Jennings was 1-5 with 3 strikeouts…1B Leslie Anderson had 2 hits including his 5th home run.
  • MONTGOMERY 8, Mobile 0: Matt Moore tossed a no-hitter…LF Stephen Vogt went 3-5 and drove in 3…SS Tim Bekcham was 1-3 with a walk.
  • CHARLOTTE 10, Bradenton 1: Alex Koronis gave up 1 run in 5 innings, striking out 3 and walking 1…Two more hits for SS Hak-Ju Lee who is now hitting .356…2B Tyler Bortnick hit his 3rd home run, a grand slam.
  • BOWLING GREEN 5, West Michigan 2: George Jensen held West Michigan to 2 runs (1 earned) in 5 innings…RF Cody Rogers was 2-4…SS Derek Dietrich was 2-3.


The Lightning Take Batting Practice (via TampaBay.com)

Mike Smith and fellow Bolts celebrate his BP home run (via TampaBay.com)

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32 Comments

  1. Derek says:

    Isn't Farnsworth paid to throw a baseball? If he needs the ninth inning to be able to do that, then maybe he should find a new career. Emotional maturity. Get some, Kyle.

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  2. Sledge says:

    Wade pitched 2 *perfect* innings for the Yanks, against the AL West leading Rangers no less. Hard to believe Russell or Sonny didn't have a strained tongue or something to save that guy.

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    • Derek says:

      What happens next time if he gives up 5 home runs? Is our bullpen really this teams problem? Has Russel not been great since the start of the season? His era is 2.13. He needs to work on his command a bit more, but he has done very well.

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      • Indiana Rays Boy says:

        Russell has had a rocky start but has picked it up lately but at times he struggled in critical situations. Sonnanstine is another story; he is waste of a roster spot. Pressure situations or the team is winning/losing by 6 runs, he gives up runs left and right. They need to get rid of him ASAP, I hate to see Corey Wade go especially he put up numbers in AAA. At the same time, Brandon Gomes has had similar numbers as Wade and had done a nice job with the Rays before he got sent back. I would prefer Gomes over Sonny.

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        • Derek says:

          Yep, the Rays weren't fans. With their ability to spot good bullpen arms, and the Yanks inability, I trust that they saw something they didn't like.

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  3. Sarah says:

    Cork, and seemingly every other commentator is pleased that Price put Youkilis in his place.

    Well, I don't get it.

    I thought the idea of baseball, actually, was to win games. So intentionally hitting a guy in order to load the bases for one of baseball's hottest hitters wouldn't seem like such a bright idea. Especially when the pitcher has struggled with the first three batters, making us wonder if he'll be able to get anyone out at all. And then let's consider the fact that the intentional plunking led directly to a run on a night when one run made a big difference -- to me that spells "stupid move."

    But today I see that everyone else is pleased that Price did this. So please explain to me what I'm missing. When did exactly a meaningless "revenge" become more important than preventing the other team from scoring? In a tight game against the first place team?

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    • Cork Gaines says:

      In this case, first base was open and Youkilis, one of their best hitters, is right-handed. And a lefty was on deck. Price was going to pitch around him and walk him anyway. Hitting Youkilis saved Price a couple of pitches. That's all.

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    • Derek says:

      It was one of the dumbest plunkings ever. I hate them in general, and I hate them more when they load the bases with one? out in the first against the Sox. Stupid stupid stupid. Childish, non-professional, and not something a contending team should concern themselves with.

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      • Cork Gaines says:

        If you hate plunkings, that's cool. But he was going to pitch around Youkilis anyway. Why pitch to a right-handed power bat with first base open when there is a lefty on deck? A lefty that is a good bet to ground into a double-play.

        Putting Youkilis on first base was far from stupid, stupid, stupid. How he got there is up for debate.

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        • Derek says:

          Other than GB% Ortiz has been better vs lefties in every other metric this year when compared to Youk. I would rather him pitch to the guy that has struck out in 30+% of his pa's against lefties this year, not hit him to face the guy who is having the best year of his career.

          I can live with him plunking him. I can't live with him plunking him in that situation. Praise it all you want, it was dumb. If he didn't want to face him, he could pitch around him and possible get the K. Instead, he gave up a free base without even making him work for it.

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          • Derek says:

            But I'm sure that Youk has learned his lesson! and he will never, ever mess with the big, bad Rays again, right?

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          • Chris Mooney says:

            ah yes. it's the old "punishment is stupid, they'll just do it again" argument. Somebody tell the prison systems that is time to close shop.

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          • Derek says:

            I'm not sure if I can take this seriously. I mean, you just compared the prison system to a baseball game. I'm sorry if you can see the difference there.

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    • Amanda says:

      The same reason why it was so important to seek revenge for what Duncan did in the preseason in '08. The (nee: Devil) Rays were an easy mark, long trounced and made fun of. One of the turning points of the franchise was when they decided they weren't going to take crap from other teams any more. It's comeradere. It's standing up against a bully instead of turning tail and tattling. It's holidng your head up high for doing the right thing and standing up for your teammate, even though you may lose a battle, you may end up winning the war in the end.

      Honestly, it's really a concept that's missing in our society in a whole.

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      • Derek says:

        That explains Lybia. People running from their bullies.

        This is baseball, and you play to win the game, not play to see who has the bigger balls.

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      • Sarah says:

        Seriously, Amanda? Some sort of reversion to "an eye for an eye" morality is your idea of social uplift? Apart from the silliness of projecting the events of a ballgame into some sort of larger moral truth, I find it nearly impossible to imagine that you truly believe the world would be better off if we all dealt with bullies by bullying them back. It seems to me as though that sort of childish behavior is already quite rampant -- and it's why we have gang fights, revenge killings and wars. I'd like us to do better as a society.

        And, getting back to baseball, I'd prefer that David Price be completely focused on winning the game. Pitching around Youkilis is quite different than putting him right on base. I'll still never understand why giving a guy a free pass to first base is considered "showing him a lesson." Unless the batter actually gets injured (which is seldom, and should never be the intent of one of these paybacks), wouldn't he be happy to take the base and just ice his bruised arm later?

        And by the way, I think you mean "camaraderie" -- and the best way to achieve that is winning baseball games.

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        • Amanda says:

          That's cool, and that's your opinion. I'd rather have a team that acts like stand-up men then worry about statistics. You asked why, and I gave you the reason. And considering that Price did it in the first place, and the fact that Maddon said what he did after the game, they agree with my point of view.

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          • Sarah says:

            I'm not sure how caring about the actual outcome of a game is in your mind just "worrying about statistics." But yes, we'll have to agree to disagree.

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        • Drew says:

          If you've never played the game at a competitive level, you don't understand, and never will

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          • Derek says:

            What's the highest level you've played at, Drew? Did you play in the Majors? Because your div 3 college games hold no water when compared to the Majors, so you can get off your been there done that horse. This is real baseball. Baseball that means something to more people than you and your parents. This isn't about pride. This isn't about paybacks. This about banners. I want my team to hang those banners. And I'll be damned if some childish bullshit makes me forget about why I root for people I've never met to be successful. Who do you think got the last laugh last night? Which team do you think spent more time thinking about that HBP? The team that probably lost because of it, or the team the probably won because of it? Which team sits in first place and is probably the best team in baseball?

            I didn't play baseball at a high level, like you, but I've played other sports, and when teams pulled shit like this, and lost, I laughed. I. just. laughed. I didn't respect them more. I didn't fear them the next time out. I gathered up my friends, my teammates, and I laughed.

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    • Rg says:

      Sarah,
      The short answer to your question is; baseball is a boys game played by grownup boys. Click my moniker for a more detailed explanation. I personally liked the way Price moved right up to home plate to make things easier for Youk should he have wanted to do something about it.

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      • Derek says:

        It amazes me how nobody seems to understand that in the first inning, with two men on and one man out, that this was the wrong thing to do. It's a flat out loss of focus and vision. He saw red, and he acted. I couldn't care less about Ortiz and his 49% ground ball rate. David Price is one of the best lefties in the game, and if he is too scared to pitch to Youk in that situation then he shouldn't be trying show him who is boss. He let the whole world know the he was scared of him, and his HBP isn't covering that up. You can watch any man give an interview, and in situations like this he says. "I'll let my play do the talking for me." Well that one pitch said a lot about this team and Price.

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        • Rg says:

          You're wound a little tight aren't you? I understand all of the ramifications of your argument. Get over yourself!

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          • Derek says:

            ...

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          • Derek says:

            All you're saying is that you agree with it, because that's how the game is played. At least you understand my argument, because I see no point in yours.

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  4. Erick says:

    Who is the shortstop for Durham? I only ask because the way that Lee has been hitting is ridiculous. He needs to be promoted so we can see what he can do against better pitching. Beckham has been hitting very well too and you could make a case he should be promoted as well. I'm just curious what the Rays are going to do if these two continue to hit this well. Sounds like a good problem though.

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    • phil says:

      whoever the shortstop is he is not a prospect i am guessing, but beckham and Lee are prospects and they need a ss that can hit for 2012! so let's advance them through the system...Erick lead the charge!

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      • Chris says:

        Durham's shortstop this year is Ray Olmedo, a veteran (30 year old) AAA infielder who's having a decent year. Hits in the high 200s, quick hands, so-so range, good guy to have in the clubhouse. Terrific situational hitter. Knows what to do and when. HIts about 2 or 3 home runs a year. Last time in the majors was with Toronto in 2007. You've got a bunch of guys who're supposed to be able to play shortstop — Brignac, Johnson, Rodriguez, Zobrist. We like Ray a lot. I thought Perez was supposed to be able to play short stop. He just came back. And don't forget what a great shortstop BJ is!

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  5. Rob says:

    Why are you in such a rush to advance a shortstop through the system when we have "I can't bunt" Elliot Johnson, "Mr .180" Reid Brignac and "Pitches in the dirt fool me" Sean Rodriguez platooning out there?

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  6. Carey says:

    Plunking's are plunkings and it's been a part of baseball for 140+ years. Deal with it or go watch the ND(iva)A. Yes, it's immature, but so are hot foots, shaving cream pies, mohawks, etc.

    I do, however, love this:
    "Did you hear?…ESPN’s “Baseball Tonight” crew on the umpire warning both team after David Price hit Kevin Youkilis: “We have no idea why [the warning] happened.”"

    Wow! To say that this show is inferior to the competition (MLB Tonight) is the understatement of the year. My guess is BBT goes to a full-time 30-minute slot within a year and maybe even goes away alltogether. Watch the two some night and the difference is amazing.

    BBT: Scripted, contrived, mediocre talent (hosts and color), weak analysis, dated or incorrect (see above) information, takes itself WAY to seriously.

    MLBT: Organic, spontanious, superior talent (hosts and color), solid and informative analysis, factually correct (Rays games are played in St. Pete and they always get this right while ESPN intentionally gets it wrong) and even makes you laugh at times. Great show. Best of it's kind (and crack for fantasy players). My only complaint: Not on enough (Can't they just do what MTV did and create a second channel for games).

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  7. Carey says:

    I watch MLB Tonight for one reason and one reason only: To laugh at how bad it is.

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