RAYS 4, Mariners 3 (boxscore)
THE GOOD: Jeff Niemann. Once again we got crafty Niemann, throwing 6 different pitches at least 10 times, and none more than 24 times. On top of that, he actually had a little extra mustard on the fastball, reaching 93mph…2-Out Rally. Kevin Millwood retired the first 5 batters he faced. But then, with 2 outs in the 2nd, 6 straight batters reached base leading to 4 runs…Bullpen. Where would the Rays be without their bullpen? Jake McGee and Fernando Rodney combined to face 10 batters, and retired them all. They struck out 3 (all by McGee).
THE BAD: Injuries. Hey, if they are going to happen, this is a point in the schedule where it might do the least amount of damage, this is it. Still, yesterday’s lineup resembled a split-squad spring training trip to Jupiter, with names like Allen, Rhymes, Keppinger, and Gimenez…So, When Is Hideki Coming? We had heard good things about Brandon Allen’s defense. But that wasn’t on display yesterday when he appeared to jog in and allowed what looked like a catchable blooper to fall in front of him.
THE TELLING: The Rays now have the best record in baseball at 18-8. They are 14-3 in their last 17…BJ Upton is expected to be in the lineup today…Maybe it was already part of the plan, but interesting to note, that with Tim Beckham suspended, Reid Brignac played second base last night.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Mariano Rivera tore his ACL. His season and his career may be over. [BI Sports]
- Matt Bush had his bail reduced. [TampaBay.com]
- Don Zimmer has been released from the hospital. [TampaBay.com]
- David Price chews a LOT of gum. [MLB.com]
- The Rays are not one of the 20 cheapest teams in North America. However, the Bucs are. [BI Sports]
- Bucs mini-camp starts today. Joe will be there and will have it all covered all day long. [Joe Bucs Fan]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
Louisville 4, DURHAM 3 (11). Chris Archer struck out 6 and walked 2, giving up 3 runs in 6 innings, and lowering his ERA to 6.52…Reid Brignac played second base and hit his first home run going 2-5.
MONTGOMERY 7, Tennessee 4. Shane Dyer tossed 6 shutout innings, striking out 1 and walking 1…SS Hak-Ju Lee was 0-5…CF Brad Coon hit his 2nd home run, and DH Kyeong Kang added 3 hits, including his 7th home run. That is tied for the Southern League lead.
CHARLOTTE 3, Bradenton 2 (16). Grayson Garvin struck out 10 and walked 2 in just 5.1 innings. He allowed 3 hits and 1 run…CF Ty Morrison was 4-6 with 2 stolen bases…3B Riccio Torrez hit his 2nd home run.
South Bend 5, BOWLING GREEN 3. RF Drew Vettleson went 0-4 with 3 strikeouts…C Alejandro Segovia went 2-2 with 2 walks, but also committed 2 errors (although 1 was just catcher interference).