Of all the accolades deserved by the Rays tonight in Chicago, Joe must bow to the Rays defense for the 3-2 win.
It started on the opening White Sox at bat, with B.J. Upton getting on his horse and making an over-the-shoulder catch look far to easy. So easy that nobody’s going to talk about it on Friday. And the defensive gems kept coming, as James Shields handed out baserunners only to have them inhaled by the Rays’ leather.
The days of suffering watching Sean Rodriguez and Elliot Johnson seem like ancient history.
The Rays turned three double plays, including a throwback gem of a pick by Evan Longoria, to set up the hard-fought bow and arrow to extend this run to 8-0. And don’t forget Desmond Jennings refusing to let one get by him in left-center.
The Rays own their destiny at this point, and they even might have bought some wiggle room for a loss in their final six games.
As Longoria said after the game, “No Excuses.” Joe couldn’t agree more. Baltimore and Oakland are not better teams right now.