Nationals 3, RAYS 2 (boxscore)
THE GOOD: Chris Archer. Making a big league debut is a big moment for anybody. And Archer is clearly one that wears emotion on his sleeve as he was seen crying before the game. And it is reasonable to think that this might have had something to do with his struggle in the first inning giving up 3 runs on 3 hits and a wild pitch. But then he settled down and retired 15 of the final 16 batters he faced, allowing just a walk. In fact, that walk was the surprise of the night. Archer struggled mightily with his control in the minors. And yet last night he struck out 7 and walked just that one batter…Joel Peralta. You had to know Joe Maddon was going to get Peralta in there last night. On the one hand, he is about to get an extended vacation. But also, it was important to get one if his best relievers back out on the bump and let him prove that his skills are not artificially enhanced. And he did that, retiring both batters he faced. In fact, he almost seemed too amped up, with more deep breaths than usual and hitting 93 on the gun.
THE BAD: Hot Rod. With 1 run in and a runner on 2nd and no outs in the first inning, Chris Archer induced a goundball that should have been a force out at third base. But Sean Rodriguez didn’t catch the throw from Elliot Johnson. And then, to make matters worse, he stopped running after the ball as it rolled towards the dugout. Eventually the ball went into the dugout and the runner was allowed to score.
THE TELLING: Chris Archer was the first pitcher not drafted by the Rays to start a game for the Rays since Matt Garza at the end of the 2010 season…There has not been a ruling on Joel Peralta’s suspension yet as his glove was flown to New York for inspection….The Rays are 3 games back of the Yankees and 0.5 games behind the Orioles.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Both Luke Scott and Jeff Keppinger are expected to be activated on this roadtrip. Meanwhile, Matt Joyce’s back is still sore, but not expected to need a trip to the DL. [TampaBay.com]
- Meanwhile, the Rays need 2-3 more days before making any decisions on Evan Longoria. [TBO.com]
- Big Lead Sports spoke with Bossman Upton about how he uses technology to keep up with both of his sons. [BigLeadSports]
- Chuck Hernandez talks about how pitchers using pine tar is good for baseball. [TampaBay.com]
- Geez, even the Iron Sheik is trashing on Joe Maddon (warning: potty mouth). [@the_ironsheik]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
Rochester 7, DURHAM 6. Shane Dyer gave up 4 runs on 11 hits in 6 innings. He stuck out 4…RF Leslie Anderson went 0-5 and is hitting .315…DH Henry Wrigley had 3 hits and a walk…SS Reid Brignac went 1-4.
MONTGOMERY. no games scheduled.
CHARLOTTE 7, Palm Beach 5. Victor Mateo threw 6 shutout innings, giving up 3 hits and 4 walks. He struck out 2…RF Mikie Mahtook was 2-5 with a double and a triple…SS Derek Dietrich went 1-3 and is hitting .266.
BOWLING GREEN. no games scheduled
HUDSON VALLEY 5, Aberdeen 3. 2011 first-round pick Taylor Guerrieri made his first pro start and tossed 5 shutout innings, striking out 6 and allowing just 2 hits and 1 walk.
PRINCETON 10, Kingsport 7. SS Brandon Martin, a first-round pick in 2011, went 2-5 with his first home run.