RAYS 9, Orioles 8 (boxscore)
THE GOOD: 9-1. On a day when the Rays needed to put some crooked numbers up on the board, the 9th hitter (Elliot Johnson) and leadoff batter (Ben Zobrist), combined to go 6-8 with 2 HRs, a stolen base, a walk and 5 RBI...Sean Rodriguez. After nearly making the greatest defensive play we have ever seen by a third baseman (charging, throwing to first from his butt), He responded by ending the game with a half-dive stop to his right and then throwing the runner out at first…Burke Badenhop. It’s been a rough start to the season for the pitcher that reminds us a little too much of Shawn Camp at times. But yesterday with the Rays’ big lead slipping away, Joe Maddon needed a groundball double-play, and Badenhop got it. Well, the batter was safe at first on a bang-bang play, but Badenhop did his job.
THE BAD: BJ Upton. Yikes. Bossman went bad. Four strikeouts, and then leaping at the wall for what should have been an easy catch (for him). Just not his best day at the ole ballpark…Another DL? No Desmond Jennings (again). And now it sounds like the Rays are considering a move to put him on the DL after all…Interfering Gimenez. Chris Gimenez has been called for interference three times this season. Not bad considering he is a part-time player that started the season in triple-A. And by “not bad” we mean “bad.”
THE TELLING: Hideki Matsui will report to triple-A Durham on Tuesday…The Rays are 21-14, one game behind the Orioles. They are also 1.5 games ahead of the Yankees, and 5.5 ahead of the Red Sox.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Richard de los Santos, who started the 2011 season in the triple-A rotation, has been released by the Rays. He made just 2 starts in 2011 before injuring his arm. He hasn’t pitched since. [Biscuit Crumbs]
- Did Evan Longoria accuse the O’s fans of being “too obnoxious”? [SportsReport.com]
- The starting pitchers took their first batting practice, and Matt Moore won the home run derby with five. David Price had four. [TampaBay.com]
- We’ve talked about this before…the Rays don’t like the “closer” label, despite Joe Maddon’s preference to have an actual closer. [TampaBay.com]
- The “oddest” home runs in Rays history. [TampaBay.com]
- So who is the Bucs starting running back? [JoeBucsFan]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
DURHAM 3, Scranton/WB 1. Chris Archer had a whopping 9 strikeouts in just 6 innings, but walked 4 and allowed an unearned run on 3 hits…Ryan Reid faced 7 batters in 2 innings of relief and struck out 4…SS Shawn O’Malley went 3-5 and stole his 6th base…1b Leslie Anderson was 0-4.
Jacksonville 6, MONTGOMERY 2 (game 1). Jacob Thompson struck out 5 and walked 3 in 4.2 innings. He gave up 3 runs on 5 hits…SS Hak-Ju Lee was 0-4…2B Tyler Bortnick went 0-1 with a walk and stole his 11 base.
MONTGOMERY 7, Jacksonville 1 (game 2). Three pitchers combined to allow just 1 runs on 3 hits and 3 walks in 7 innings…SS Hak-Ju Lee was 1-4 with a strikeout and his 9th stolen base.
CHARLOTTE. (no game scheduled)
South Bend @ BOWLING GREEN. (postponed)