The GBT – The Good, The Bad and The Telling sandwich, where The Bad is nice and lean and the The Telling is ripe.
RAYS 6, Rangers 2 (boxscore)
THE GOOD: Alex Cobb. In 13 starts prior to going on the DL, Cobb had a 3.01 ERA and opponents were batting .233. In 7 starts since returning from the DL, Cobb has a 3.05 ERA and opponents are hitting .239. That is amazing consistency…Wil Myers. Serious question: If you had to keep just one player, would you pick Evan Longoria or Wil Myers? Keep in mind age, contract, defense, and health. If I knew Longoria would give the Rays 150+ games every year for the rest of his contract, this might be a no-brainer. Longo plays a more important position and he plays it well. He is also a known commodity. But Myers is on track to be a more dominant hitter for many years. What if you knew the Rays would be able to sign Myers to a long-term contract? Myers is five years younger than Longoria. All of a sudden it is no longer a no-brainer. Ultimately I think you can make a very convincing argument for both. And I really want to say Longo because of the glove and the contract. But man, Myers is something special with the bat. The ball just jumps off his bat in way that few can do. It’s exciting. It’s infectious…James Shields. At a time when it would be nice to have a James Shields to come up with a big win, he did. He struck out 10 and allowed just 1 run in a win over the Indians, pushing the Rays’ lead in the Wild Card to 1.5 games over the Indians.
THE BAD: 10,724. The attendance for a team competing for a playoff spot, playing another team competing for a playoff spot. Here comes the ridicule and it will be deserved. Not all of the criticism will be completely accurate since people will say “the problem is A,” when in reality the problem is A, B, C, D, E, F, and probably G. But the criticism will be justified.
THE TELLING: In a game the Rays needed the Royals to win, James Shields started and Wade Davis was the first reliever out of the bullpen. And oh by the way, Shields beat Scott Kazmir…Last night was Alex Cobb’s 20th start, giving the Rays six starting pitchers with 20 starts. The Rays are just the 7th AL team to do that…Tonight’s triple-A championship game will be on NBC Sports Network at 7:00…The Rays are now 82-67 and now lead the Wild Card, 1.5 games ahead of the Indians for the second Wild Card spot. The Rays’ magic number is now 12.
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Jesse Crain faced live batters and afterwards said he was at 90%. [TBO.com]
- TJ Pittinger put together a chart of what each team has to do to catch the Rays in the Wild Card. Keep in mind, tying the Rays only forces a play-in game. The teams have to do one better than these to pass the Rays. [@TJ_Pittinger]
- Chris Wise breaks down the matchup between the Durham Bulls and the Omaha Storm Chasers in the triple-A championship game. [WDBB]
- Suspension for Dashon Goldson. [JoeBucsFan]
DOWN ON THE FARM…
DURHAM. Durham won the International League championship, 3-games-to-1 over the Pawtucket Red Sox. Next up is the Omaha Storm Chasers, the champions of the Pacific Coast League. Those two teams will meet in a one-game triple-A championship tonight.
MONTGOMERY. The Biscuits finished the season 71-69.
CHARLOTTE. The Stone Crabs finished the regular season 67-65. They lost their playoff series 3-0.
BOWLING GREEN. The Hot Rods finished the regular season 82-56. Bowling Green lost their first round playoff series 2-0.
HUDSON VALLEY. The Renegades finished the season 38-37.
PRINCETON. The Rays finished the season 25-43.