Yankees 6, RAYS 4 (boxscore)
THE GOOD: Matt Moore. Anytime a rookie works into the 7th inning, strikes out 9 and walks just 1 Yankee, that is a good night. And if he had better defense behind him, he wouldn’t have given up 6 runs (4 earned). Double-nickel deserved a better fate. Then again, he was tipping his pitches (see the video here)…Ben Zobrist. Is there another good hitter in baseball with an uglier swing than Zobrist? Maybe Hunter Pence? But the list is few. And last night, it was a 2-run triple that had many thinking the Rays were going to pull this one out.
THE BAD: Elliot Johnson. Sometimes a player just has one of those days. And poor EJ is having one of those weeks. First was a failed safety squeeze. Then, on a play in which he probably should have deferred to Sam Fuld, he dropped a pop-up in shallow center. But the worst play came with Ichiro on third base. EJ, playing in, assumed Ichiro would stay at third, but by the time Johnson realized Ichiro was breaking for home, EJ rushed his throw which went to the backstop. Of course, Jose Lobaton didn’t help matters when he got a case of the alligator arms (he was apparently worried that Ichiro might run him over), and a 2nd run scored.
THE TELLING: Rays are now 75-62, 2.5 games behind the Yankees and 1.5 games behind both the O’s and A’s. The Rays need to go 17-8 in the final 25 games to get to 92 wins, or 15-10 just to get to 90 wins.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Bobby Valentine defended his tardiness to a recent game by mentioning that Joe Maddon arrives at the park at 4:00 pm (he actually gets there earlier). Well, Maddon then took some shots at Bobby V.. [TampaBay.com]
- Were Joe Maddon’s comments in reference to Bobby Valentine a cheap shot? One blogger thinks so. [HardballTalk]
- Melky Cabrera, suspended for using steroids, might still win the batting title even though he doesn’t have enough plate appearances to qualify. [BI Sports]
- MLBTradeRumors takes a look at Jeff Keppinger’s value in the free agency market following the season. [MLBTR]
- The Bucs are now begging fans to support the team. [JoeBucsFan]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
DURHAM. season completed
MONTGOMERY. regular season completed. playoffs begin tonight.
CHARLOTTE. season completed
Lake County 5, BOWLING GREEN 4. (Hot Rods trail 1-0 in best-of-3) Parker Markel was pounded for 5 runs in just 2.2 innings…RF Drew Vettleson went 3-5 and DH Cameron Seitzer had 2 hits and 3 RBI.
HUDSON VALLEY 3, Tri-City 2. 3B Richie Shaffer was 2-3 with a double in the final game of the regular season. The first game of the playoffs is tomorrow.
PRINCETON. season completed