Mets 9, RAYS 1 (boxscore)
THE GOOD: Knuckleballs. Knuckleballs are to your wrist what sliders are to your elbow. That is why it is so rare for pitchers to throw knuckleballs as a secondary pitch. But for the rare pitcher that masters the knuckle, it is a thing of beauty, even if it nearly no-hit the Rays last night…Broadcast Auction. Last night was the sixth annual broadcast auction and the Rays raised an estimated $78,000. Although many people had a chuckle at how much money was being paid for hitting lessons from Carlos Pena (we don’t recall the final bid).
THE BAD: One Hit? The official boxscore says RA Dickey threw a one-hitter. It was the first time the Rays were one-hit since last July. But it was the 8th time they have had one hit or less since the start of the 2010 season. And one could easily make a case that it should have been a no-hitter as the lone hit came on a BJ Upton single in the first inning that was misplayed by David Wright.
THE TELLING: The Rays swung at 63 knuckleballs and missed 22…Ben Zobrist was out of the lineup again.. However, this time it was reported that he was “ill”…Luke Scott was again not in the lineup. He is battling a sore back…The Rays are now 1.5 games behind the Yankees, and one-half game behind the Orioles.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- We have a couple of examples of RA Dickey’s knuckler below.
- Here is the Rays lone hit. Should this have been a no-hitter? [BI Sports]
- The Rays 5th-round draft pick is the highest to sign so far. [RaysProspects]
- The New York Times spoke with St. Pete Mayor Bill Foster about the Rays and the stadium situation. [NYTimes]
- Here is Noah Pransky’s response. [Shadow of the Stadium]
- More sights and sounds from Bucs minicamp. [JoeBucsFan]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
DURHAM. no games scheduled
MONTGOMERY 6, Huntsville 3. SS Hak-Ju Lee was 1-5. He’s hitting .240..2B Tyler Bortnick was 1-3 with his 16th stolen base.
Jupiter 2, CHARLOTTE 1. Albert Suarez tossed 7 shutout innings, giving up just 5 hits and 3 walks. He struck out 4…CF Mikie Mahtook went 2-4. He’s hitting .277.
West Michigan 4, BOWLING GREEN 2. Andrew Bellatti made his first start of the year, giving up 4 runs in 3 innings, striking out 3…RF Drew Vettleson was 2-5 and LF Josh Sale went 2-4…1B Jeff Malm had 3 hits including his 6th home run.
RA Dickey’s knuckler doesn’t dance as much as most knuckleball pitchers because he throws it harder than most. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t effective. Notice the side-spin. Most knuckleballs tumble with a bit of top-spin (if any) causing the ball to dip…