Evan LongoriaThe GBT – The Good, The Bad and The Telling sandwich, where The Bad is nice and lean and the The Telling is ripe.

RAYS 6, Pirates 2 (boxscore)

THE GOOD: Evan Longoria. Dirtbag hit his first home run of the spring…Evan Longoria’s Glove. Longo committed two errors on one play. So why is Longo’s glove in the “good”? The Rays have committed 23 errors this season, but those two by Longoria were just the 6th and 7th committed by position players that will be on the opening day roster…Shelley Duncan. Shirley hit his fifth home run of the spring and then was rewarded with a trip to minor league camp.

THE BAD: Luke Scott’s Health. Scott was a “precautionary” scratch from Monday’s game with calf tightness. At this point, I would be shocked if Scott played 90 games this season.

THE TELLING: The Rays cut four more players, including Chris GimenezShelley Duncan, Jason Bourgeois, and Mike Fontenot. Gimenez was optioned (he’s on the 40-man roster) and the others were reassigned to minor league camp. These moves mean Jose Lobaton will indeed be the second catcher (we knew that already). Also, catcher Craig Albernaz and relief pitcher Jamey Wright are the only non-roster players still in camp with the Rays…Sam Fuld played in a minor league game.

THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA

  • Here is a video preview of the Rays by Jon Paul Morosi of FoxSports.com. He thinks the Rays are going to struggle without James Shields and BJ Upton. [Fox Sports]
  • Joe Maddon pretty much admitted what we already knew, that Chris Gimenez is in the minors only because Jose Lobaton is out of minor league options, saying “it’s just part of the business.” So if you wanted the 25 best players on the big league roster, you ain’t gettin’ it. [TBO.com]
  • Scott Kazmir will indeed be the fifth starter for the Indians. And his first start? That will be in Tropicana Field. [CBSSports.com]
  • Brandon Gomes probably won’t make the Rays opening day roster unless Jeff Niemann is traded. But Joe Maddon says gomes will be a “big part of what [the Rays] are going to do this year.” In other words, he is the first reliever “off the bench.” [TampaBay.com]
  • You will never guess how many people in the ESPN.com bracket contest have Florida Gulf Coast University winning it all. [BI Sports]
  • Ronde Barber has not decided if he wants to play one more year with the Bucs. [JoeBucsFan]

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13 Comments

  1. Ken says:

    I’ve been encouraged by the Rays players’ performance on the field so far this spring. I wish I could say the same for the management. In one day Andy, Stewie and Joey made a dumb move: sending Duncan down instead of “DL ing” Fuld, a dumber move: keeping Lobaton over Gimenez, and are about to make the dumbest move: keeping Wright over Gomes.
    All these decisions are low risk, low reward. Does anybody really thing Lobaton will be picked up on waivers and spend the entire season with another club? Is Fuld really that valuable to the team, Cork? If Scott indeed plays only 90 games isn’t Duncan a better choice given his power potential? Why not give Wright his $100,000 and dispatch him to Durham rather than risk Gomes backtracking due to freak AAA injury or disappointment with the demotion?
    How Sternburg and Friedman ever made millions in the stock market puzzles me if they played the market the same way they play with a MLB roster. These moves have little financial impact. They are just bad decisions.
    The fans deserve the best, and yes, affordable team management can produce.

  2. Mr. Smith 1980 says:

    Duncan is a AAAA player. Scott is a proven MLB commodity. They played their hand the way any smart investor would, go with what you know stay away from a suddenly popular and most-likey fleeting stock. Lobaton is out of options and after all the effort they’ve put into him why would you take a chance of losing him to keep a marginal player who still has options?? Be smart not emotional.

    • Ken says:

      They have Fuld, Rodriguez and Roberts who are also AAAA players. Why not keep Duncan instead of one of these players? I agree that Scott is our main DH, but really, are any of the above players more valuable than Duncan? I’d have Duncan sub for Scott periodically to keep him healthy and also spell Loney with Duncan against tough lefties.
      No emotion here. Though the Rays have a tendency to become emotionally attached to players. JP, EJ, Briggy, and Navarro are all examples that immediately come to mind.

      • Tom says:

        Shelley Duncan???? Roberts, Fuld and Srod are all more valuable because they can play defense.

      • Mr. Smith 1980 says:

        I’m not an SRod fan at all, but even he has a much higher ceiling than Duncan. I think you would do yourself a service to go and check Roberts’ lifetime stats, and Fuld is just good enough to be dangerous- he’s like a Johnny Gomes type of player in that his hustle makes up for his lack of natural talent.

      • Mike says:

        Shirley Duncan is a punk who should never have been signed after what he did to Aki. He is just lucky Johnny wasn’t around this spring to go gansta on his ass again.

      • Steve says:

        Duncan is garbage. If you want an aging clubhouse cancer with no upside who will hit .217 but occasionally hit a longball as a part-time DH (because he sucks everywhere defensively) then Shirley is your man. Roberts, Fuld, and even SRod are much more valuable to the team.

        • Ken says:

          I yield to the emotionally charged comments regarding Duncan. However Jose (GIDP) Lobaton is a waste on the roster. My clubhouse friend told me that the Rays pitchers hate throwing to him. He has little to no chance of having an impact on the team’s performance. Also note that Roberts and SRod have declined performance wise over the last three years. I like ‘em both but do we really need 4 second basemen?

          • Steve says:

            I couldn’t agree more regarding Lobaton/Gimenez, I think it’s ridiculous they sent Gimenez down just because he had an option (because, apparently, Lobaton would be so sought after if he were to be DFA’d). I love Roberts and his versatility, but I’ll admit there really isn’t a big need for SRod when we have Roberts.

          • Tom says:

            Emotion has nothing to do with it, Fuld, SRod, and Roberts are all have a greater career WAR than Duncan because they all play defense well and are better baserunners and actually are not far behind Duncan offensively either.

          • Lane Meyer says:

            Duncan = Mr. March. He looks great in the spring and then is a .229 batter with poor defensive skills once the season starts. Add to that a short fuse and you have a Red Sock player, not a Ray.

  3. Don says:

    Well lets see…Rays #1 problem: Lack of offense, scoring runs, Have I lost anyone yet?
    Does ANYONE out there think that keeping Lobaton/Fuld helps the offense as opposed to keeping Gimenez/ Duncan…..
    I really think we are Dealing with “offense” challenged minds Management/coaching
    Forget about Options and Money try to score some runs Friedman/maddon…you think?

  4. Tom says:

    Giminez is a career .198 hitter, Duncan is a career .229 hitter. Do people really think these guys are the answer to the Rays offensive problems? It is noot lile either guy has great power to offset the low BA.

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