The GBT – The Good, The Bad and The Telling sandwich, where The Bad is nice and lean and the The Telling is ripe.
RAYS 3, Tigers 1 (boxscore)
THE GOOD: Jeremy Hellickson. Hellickson made one mistake to Miguel Cabrera (something a lot of pitchers do) when he hung a curveball. But outside of that pitch, Hellickson pitched a solid game. He did walk three, but outside of Cabrera, the only hitter to leadoff an inning and get on base was Andy Dirks, who doubled to leadoff the 7th inning. And before he started to implode in the 7th inning, how great was the 6th inning? He retired Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder, and Victor Martinez on 4 pitches. FOUR! If you take away the 6th inning against the Royals, Helly was 5-0 with a 1.54 ERA in June….Joe Maddon. It was surprising to hear so many people calling for Miguel Cabrera to be hit leading off the 8th inning. The Rays were clinging to a 2-run lead and Prince Fielder was on deck. Sure you want revenge, but isn’t winning more important? Brian Anderson went on a 5 minute rant about not hitting Cabrera that was mind-boggling. And in the end, maybe bringing Kyle Farnsworth in to face Cabrera was a brilliant strategy to get Cabrera thinking he was about to be hit. Cabrera didn’t look like he was ready to swing the bat until he lined out on the 5th pitch…Jake McGee. After Jeremy Hellickson walked Jhonny Peralta, McGee was called on with the bases loaded and no outs. Three batters later, the inning was over and the Tigers failed to score…Kelly Johnson. He has started games at 1B, 2B, 3B, and LF. And he has looked solid defensively at all of them. This weekend he filled in for Evan Longoria and made a couple of spectacular defensive plays, including a diving stop to start an inning-ending double-play and making a nice stop on a short-hop followed by a strong throw home with the bases loaded and one out in the 7th inning…Fernando Rodney. After blowing 5 of his first 14 save opportunities (thanks, WBC), he has converted 8 straight saves, striking out 12 in 7.1 innings over that stretch with just 4 hits.
THE BAD: Miguel Cabrera. So much talent, so much whining. As Joe Maddon said, “He’s wonderful, I just wish he wouldn’t cry so much.” And this is definitely more about Cabrera than Leyland. As Maddon pointed out, when a pitch was up-and-in to Jhonny Peralta, nobody complained.
THE TELLING: Miguel Cabrera joined Luis Gonzalez as the only players to hit a ball into the Rays tank…The Rays play their next 14 games against 3 of the worst teams in the AL, the Astros, the White Sox and the Twins. Prediction? A disappointing 8-6…Don Zimmer declined an invitation to be an honorary coach at the All-Star game…The Rays are now 43-39, 6 games behind the Red Sox. But they have moved ahead of the Yankees into third place. According to CoolStandings.com, the Rays now have a 36.8% chance of making the playoffs…
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- The Rays now sound hopeful that Evan Longoria will avoid the disabled list. [TampaBay.com]
- Here is Joe Maddon dressed for the “Accidental Preppie” road trip. [@Cut4]
- And here is Wil Myers [@HallerDave]
- In his weekend video segment, Ken Rosenthal says the Rays are “flooding the Rangers’ farm system with scouts.” Of course, the speculation is a deal for David Price. But that won’t happen unless the Rays fall of the pace and the Rangers offer the entire farm. Rosenthal does add that whenever Price becomes available, “Texas will be at the front of the line.” [Fox Sports]
- Now opposing teams are complaining about the catwalks because they didn’t get to see how far a home run was going to go. [mLive.com]
- The 25 most overpaid players in baseball. BJ Upton makes the list and Alex Rodriguez is not no. 1. [BI Sports]
- The Durham Bulls wore pink camo jerseys on Sunday (see video below)…
Columbus @ DURHAM. postponed
MONTGOMERY 4, Tennessee 3 (10). Juan Sandoval struck out 3 and walked none in 2 shutout innings of relief. He gave up just 1 hit…Mikie Mahtook walked twice in 5 plate appearances…Cameron Seitzer went 4-5 and is now hitting .280….Kevin Kiermaier had 3 hits including a double and his 4th home run. He’s hitting .323.
CHARLOTTE @ Jupiter. postponed
BOWLING GREEN 8, West Michigan 1. Jeff Ames tossed 4 shutout innings, striking out 4 and walking 3. His ERA is now 2.11…Andrew Toles went 2-4 with a double to raise his average to .311…Leonardo Reginatto went 3-5 with a triple and 5 RBI. He’s now hitting .315.
HUDSON VALLEY 1, Brooklyn 0 (11).
PRINCETON 4, Johnson City 3 (12).