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

Orioles 6, RAYS 2 (boxscore)

THE GOOD: The Rays retired Don Zimmer‘s No. 66. The ceremony included a great video tribute and had Evan Longoria present Zim’s widow with a framed jerseyVince Naimoli threw out the first pitch for the Rays. It was a nice moment for the former principal owner, who at last report, still owns 25% of the Rays. Unfortunately, Naimoli did not appear to be in the best of health. Let’s hope it is nothing serious…Evan Longoria
hit his third Opening Day home runSteve Geltz faced 4 batters and struck out all 4…David DeJesus went 2-3. As much as it sucks to lose John Jaso for a few games, it is nice to know DeJesus is still around to fill in. Not much of a drop-off.

THE BAD: Chris Archer did not have his ace-stuff giving up 4 runs (3 earned) on 6 hits and 1 walk in 5.2 innings. The big blows were a solo home run and a 2-run home run. Was it because he had to alter his normal routine? We’ll never know. His velocity looked normal. But for whatever reason he just wasn’t sharp…The offense was about as we expected with Evan Longoria hitting a home run and not much else. And with John Jaso day-to-day after injuring his wrist, it took yet another blow. Rays’ pitchers might have to figure out how to allow negative runs…We want the Rays to be more aggressive. But the downside is having 3 runners thrown out on the bases. If just 2 of those don’t happen, the game may have ended up much different…Ben Zobrist, Sam Fuld, and Stephen Vogt went a combined 6-13 with a walk, 2 home runs, and 5 RBI in the A’s 8-0 Opening Day win.

THE TELLING: John Jaso is day-to-day after jamming his wrist on a slide at second base…The Rays re-acquired pitcher Matt Buschmann from the A’s for cash and will give Durham some pitching depth. He was with Durham in 2012 and 2013 and has yet to reach the majors in 9 pro seasons…Alex Cobb is not expected back until MayJuan Francisco opted out of his minor league deal with the Rays and is now a free agent…Drew Smyly is scheduled to make a rehab start on Thursday for Charlotte…The game was announced as a sellout with attendance of 31,042.

THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA

  • Here are the rosters for the Rays’ top 4 minor league affiliates. [@RaysIndex]
  • Stuart Sternberg on whether the Rays will pursue more negotiations with the city of St. Pete during the season: “If somebody wants to put a piece of paper in front of me, I’ll take a look at it, certainly…But I’m not going to take the organization’s time and manpower and everything else and go at this thing, because we did an enormous amount of work to get to this point.” [TBO.com]
  • Chris Archer recently revealed that Matt Silverman had all the vice presidents read “Thinking Fast and Slow,” by Daniel Kahneman. Archer told Rays Radio that he read the book also. [Amazon]
  • Melvin “Don’t call him BJ” Upton has been traded to the Padres. [NY Times]
  • John Romano says Vince Naimoli deserves credit for what he brought to the area. [TampaBay.com]
  • Bob Costas wants to shorten the season and expand the playoffs and it is pretty genius. [BI Sports]

Here is Evan Longoria presenting Don Zimmer’s wife with a framed jersey.

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Here is the No. 66 next to the Rays’ other retired numbers.

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Not a big deal because lots of managers do it these days, including Joe Maddon, but I was a bit surprised Kevin Cash did not want to wear his jersey in what was his first game as a big league manager. Anybody who has ever worn a uniform will tell you that there is something special about putting it on for that first official game.

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Here is a video that reviews the changes to the minor league system.

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15 Comments

  1. Starmand says:

    Generally speaking, I like what I saw from the Rays. The glitches (Rivera, Souza, Jaso, Archer) can be blamed to a lack of attention to detail. Off-season rust.

    Regardless, I think it's going to be a great season for the Rays. With the occasional birthing pains.

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  2. Mr. Smith 1980 says:

    I am shocked that you blamed Archer's performance on his "disrupted" routine!

    Snapshot takes on game 1:

    Sousa looks like he has some major adjustments to make to his defensive game (we'll chalk this one up to the Trop dome learning curve).

    Rivera looks like a legitimate catcher (especially in comparison to the bozos that've been back there; I'm looking at you Shoppach, Slo-Mo, et al).

    Longo's hands are still fast

    Forsythe looked great defensively.

    Geltz-- yes please!

    Rivera should've started walking up the 3rd base line so that the overturned slide call never happens... or, the call shouldn't have been changed because he was obviously trying to save the runner the potential of getting hurt by not provoking any sort of collision per the "new" collision rules.

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    • Monte says:

      Mr. Smith, Cork did not blame Archer's altered schedule, he merely posed the question and said, "We'll never know."

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      • Geoff Peterson says:

        But Cork has been banging this drum for 2 weeks and seems to be patting himself on the back for his gift of prophecy when in fact several factors led to the loss and Archer had as much rest as he would otherwise have had when the number of innings and pitches are considered. Pitchers have good and bad days and no amount of rest will change that. Also let's give Baltimore some credit for playing a good game.

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  3. Schlomie BarMitzvahCircumScissorStein says:

    Players wait all year for opening day, then on a beautiful day like yesterday, they have to "go-inside" and play the game. It's too bad that there is no natural lighting so that you can see outside from your seats. If the outfield had glass behind it, it would make a huge difference.

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    • Mr. Smith 1980 says:

      Are you new to the area? Was the Trop being a dome a surprise to you?

      You are correct, more natural light would be great, but the dome is a necessary evil in central Florida.

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      • Schlomie BarMitzvahCircumScissorStein says:

        No, I'm just saying that they should have incorporated an all glass outfield area that allows light in and that allows one to see outside from the seats.. Your retort makes no sense, I didn't imply that I am new to the area nor that the dome is a surprise to me or that It isn't a necessity. It was a general comment that that should lead you to infer that they screwed up royally by not adding the aforementioned features.

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        • Mr. Smith 1980 says:

          My retort was perfectly reasonable, because if you've ever paid any attention to the Rays you'd know how "no crap" your comment was. I was trying to give you the sardonic benefit of the doubt by hoping you were new to the area, but apparently you just decided at random to make a comment about the Trop as if you'd never seen it and were shocked at how poorly it reflected the Bay area and/or baseball in general... welcome to the party.

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          • Schlomie BarMitzvahCircumScissorStein says:

            I was implying how I wish it were built differently. I gave indication that I was shocked. I merely stated that it would be nice to have glass all around the outfield. Now go fuck your mother!

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          • Mr. Smith 1980 says:

            What an adroit response. You really must learn to accept criticism in a more mature manner.

            Now, go learn some more appropriate language.

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      • Geoff Peterson says:

        Since there's a concourse and another wall behind the outfield, converting the outside wall to glass would serve no purpose and likely would cost 10's of millions. The stadium was built on spec with no tenant and the tenant has to live with the 1980's cookie cutter style that the city built for baseball.

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        • Schlomie BarMitzvahCircumScissorStein says:

          The purpose would be to see outside. Thanks for proving my point, the stadium was built on the cheap. If they would have spent another $10 million to add glass, attendance would not have been as much of an issue and we would not be in the attendance quandary we are in today.

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          • Geoff Peterson says:

            Who is the "They" to whom you refer? I assume you mean the city. Well in the mid 1980's when this stadium was being planned for no team in particular, this was the state of the art and glass sides weren't being used . Shortly thereafter, the advent of new stadium layouts ensued leading to the types now seen in Baltimore, Cleveland, Houston, San Francisco, just to name a few. The Rays and certainly their current owners had no input on the design of the park, thus their request for a better venue in a better location. Learn a little history instead of tilting at windmills.

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        • Dave L says:

          Your right schlomie. Why didnt those myopic 1980s designers just Google 'stadium glass wall. ??

          Then if the were smart like you they could have copied the Marlins or Astros designs and since were talking 1980's dollars it would have been at a fraction of the cost right?

          They could have used the savings to install USB ports in the seats.

          As you rightly note, attendance problems solved!

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          • LaneMeyer says:

            Maybe Michael J Fox could have consulted the designers and told them what stadiums would be like when the Cubs won the World Series in 2015.

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