Orioles 6, RAYS 3 (boxscore)
THE GOOD: Jose Molina. Molina? How many big hits do you think Jose Molina will have this season? Two? Three? Well, if the Rays had won this game, Molina would have had one when he singled in the 5th to tie the game…Roberto Hernandez. Yes, he gave up 4 runs and took the loss. But considering he is technically the fifth starter, it was nice to see Not-Fausto work into the 7th inning and strike out 7 with just 2 walks. He also had 8 groundballs to just 4 flyballs. And he had 12 swing-and-miss pitches, including 6 on his changeup and 4 on his sinker. As long as he stays healthy *knock on wood* Hernandez is here to stay.
THE BAD: Brutal Call. After an Evan Longoria double, the Rays had runners on 2nd and 3rd with no outs and down 6-3. But wait. The first base umpire ruled that Longoria had passed Zobrist on the bases and called him out. Let’s ignore for a second that replays showed that the umpire wasn’t even looking. And let’s ignore for a second that replays seemed to show that the call was a crock of poo poo. If you are going to make that call in the 9th inning, Longo better be standing on third base with Zobrist still hanging out by first base before you make that call. And I am usually an umpire apologist. But that was 100% horsesdoodoo…That Being Said. 1) Why was Zobrist tagging up in that situation? Normally on a play like that you want to be aggressive and try to get into scoring position. But in the 9th inning, Zobrist’s run was not that important. That is, the Rays still needed other runs behind him, so the only advantage to tagging up is to take out the possibility of a double-play on the next batter. But I am not sure that is enough on a play that is nowhere near being a sure catch; 2) Longoria has to be paying attention. And when Longoria finally did see where Zobrist was, why did Longo stay so close and give the ump a chance to make that call. Where did Longo think he was going? He wasn’t going to third with Zobrist right in front of him, so there was no need for Longo to be running that hard…And Then There Was Chris Davis. 3 HR and 11 RBI in the series. This dude just owns the Rays and I am not sad to see him go.
THE TELLING: As we mentioned previously, Roberto Hernandez was the first free agent pitcher to start a game for the Rays since Hideo Nomo in 2005…Rays versus the AL East since start of 2011: Tor (26-10), Bos (21-15), NYY (19-17), Orioles (18-21). That’s right. The Rays suck against the Orioles.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- This is supposed to be Matt Moore? This may be the worst bobblehead in the history of bobbleheads. And that’s saying something. [Biscuit Crumbs]
- Some of the Rays talk about the James Shields trade. [MLBTR]
- What if you changed the Rays font to something silly. Don’t ask. I don’t know. [BlessYouBoys]
- How is this for a big league debut? [BISports]
DOWN ON THE FARM Boxscores…
DURHAM @ Norfolk. postponed
CHARLOTTE @ Palm Beach. postponed