Playing A Little Pepper

Carlos Pena has 21 strikeouts and just 4 hits in the last 12 games he has started. What can the Rays do at this point?

The easy answer is “not much.” Joe Maddon had an extended talk with Pena after last night’s game and told the media today that Pena won’t be the “whipping boy” for the team’s struggles. Besides, it is just not in Maddon’s nature to punish or blame anybody when they are down. And if this was May, Maddon would just move Pena up to the leadoff spot to make him change his approach. But this is the August 29 and the Rays are struggling to stay alive in a pennant race. So about all Maddon can do is give him more days off and drop him to 7th or 8th in the lineup and hope for the best…DROP HIM IN THE ORDER

Game Graph

[Will be up at game time]

Source: FanGraphs

Lineup…

  1. Flash Jennings, LF
  2. BJ Upton, CF
  3. Ben Zobrist, SS
  4. Evan Longoria, DH
  5. Jeff Keppinger, 1B
  6. Ryan Roberts, 2B
  7. Elliot Johnson, 3B
  8. Jose Molina, C
  9. Sam Fuld, RF
  10. Alex Cobb, SP

Song to get you pumped up

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4 Comments

  1. Don says:

    How about hitting him 2nd, thats what Maddon did for 1/2 the season, It worked real well….then
    To hit your head on the wall once hurts, but to keep doing it is stupid.

  2. Andy says:

    Anybody else hear that Maddon also told him to slow down & take a walk instead of swinging so much & striking out? I almost barfed!!! Really, this is what you want happening during a playoff race?!! Oi Vey!!!!

  3. Rob says:

    How about making him do pushups at the plate every time he hits a ball to the right side (a la Wesley Snipes in Major League). If he would just try to hit everything to left field, I bet he would strike out way less.

  4. Dave L says:

    If Carlos is at a 3 ball count, do you really want him swinging the bat? I don’t. Im praying for a ball out of the zone and he lays off it. I have seen him miss as many fastballs over the plate as anybody.

    When he is in the lineup I am just hoping he walks twice, thats a good day for him at this point, sort of like a NL pitcher.

    This is definitely his last year in the AL and possibly in baseball.

    He’s 1-4 as a pinch hitter, so lets stick with that more often than not.

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