Chris Archer

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

RAYS (boxscore)

THE GOOD: All Joey Butler does is get big hits. His latest was a solo home run to lead off the 6th inning. That shot cut the lead to 3-2…Asdrubal Cabrera’s single in the 6th scored the tying and go-ahead runs. On the bad side, it led to Bryce Harper being injured and having to be taken out of the game. On the plus side, the Rays scored twice and took the lead for good…The bullpen was great again, especially the back-end as Jake McGee and Brad Boxberger combined to face 8 batters striking out 4, walking none, and allowing just 2 hits.

THE BAD: Chris Archer had one of those nights. He didn’t have his best stuff and seemed to be fighting himself all night. It also didn’t help that he had crappy luck. With runners on in the first, Archer got Bryce Harper to ground the ball back up the middle. With Asdrubal Cabrera shifted over behind the second base bag, it should have been an easy inning-ending double play. Instead, the ball hit Archer and a run score. Another run would score later in the inning putting the Rays in a big hole early.

THE TELLING: The Rays have now won 14 of 19 and are 38-30, 1.0 game ahead of the Yankees (tied in the loss column).


  • Pablo Sandoval of the Red Sox was benched last night because he used Instagram during a game he was playing in. [BI Sports]
  • DOWN ON THE FARM [boxscores] Durham lost a rain-shortened contest against Columbus 7-1. Dylan Floro gave up 6 runs in 5 innings, raising his ERA to 3.93. Taylor Motter had 2 of Durham’s 3 hits, including a double…Montgomery beat Biloxi 11-5 despite Jared Mortensen giving up 5 runs in 6 innings. Johnny Field hit his 11th home run and Justin O’Conner added his 6th along with a double. He also stole his 4th base. Dayron Varona went 1-5 with a double…Lakeland beat Charlotte 7-3. Kean Wong was 3-3…Bowling Green lost 3-1 with Brent Honeywell giving up 3 runs in 6 innings. Nick Ciuffo had 3 hits and an RBI.




  1. Jim says:

    Let me start out my post by apologizing to Derek Shelton. For years I (and many) have blamed our hitting coach for a lot of our woes. The blame for this clearly falls at the feet of Madden and Friedman. You guys may be able to shoot me down with stats, but to the casual observer, I see a huge difference in this team

    In years past, we seem to struggle with timely hitting, and GTMI. My theory was “how can you take pitches, work the count, and expect to produce.” We would get down in games, and it was basically over. Runners would get on base and never advance. It basically takes 4 walks to score a run, yet Maddon and Friedman were content to work the count and try to get to the bullpen.

    This was also a horrible situation for the players. If the pitchers were capable of throwing strikes, or the umps opened up the strike zone(which they do if you just stand there), then our batters were always behind in the count before they actually started to swing. How do you know if you can hit if you are at a pitcher’s count?

    Look at our total walks, for the past 5 year, we’ve been near the top of the league in BB. This year, we’re not. It may not translate in RISP stats, but once again, it’s a refreshing feeling as a fan to not think that being down 3-1 late in the game is a sure loss. I also think that the “take pitches” BS was the reason that we were the victim of so many 1,2 and no hit games.

    Once again, Sorry Derek.

    • Joe Dunn says:

      Agree- - - seems the guys are encouraged to SWING the bat . . .nobody in baseball history EVER got a game winning double by standing in the box with the bat on their shoulder.

    • Dave L says:

      The Rays are having a hot June, so enjoy it.

      Tell me more about your Shelton love after our next 4 game losing streak.

      He will always be our fans scapegoat for our motley collection of low budget castoff position players we round up year after year. They are hot right now so enjoy it but if you mistake it for the dawn of a new era you are in for a big letdown very soon.

    • Ken says:

      Hard for me to give any credit to Shelton when our 3 vets, Longo, Cabby and Rivera, are hitting far below their historical averages. Year after year the Rays gamble on marginal vets only to see them fail miserably under Derek's tutelage. Then they move on and go on a tear with another franchise.
      More likely the Rays success is due to KC's management style (far more aggressive than JoMa's) and the line up stability he has established. Ball Players, whether they be 15 or 35, like to know where they're hitting in the order, and prefer to stay in that spot. Cash has manipulated his line ups far less than Maddon while dealing with far more injuries. Same can be said for the pitching staff.
      I'm enjoying this most improbable ride. And I do like hearing a manager credit the players rather than the "process" for a well played game.

      • Jim says:

        Do you not think there’s been a complete shift in strategy to swing the bat, instead of working the count? And that is a direct cause to what we are seeing.

        My defense of Shelton is based on year after year we all bashed him for not being able to get the most out of the younger players. Now with less walks, all of a sudden the youth, and our old rookie now make it seem like we aren’t ourt of two run games.

        Yet you still find fault because our veteran are hitting below their average?!?!? The thing that we’ve all bitch at the most seems to be working better, yet somehow Shelton still is blamed for something. SRod is having a career year. Longo is hitting above his career avg, Cabby has been in a steady decline for a while, and Rivera stats are so irratic that it’s hard to judge what he really is. So you basically just made up all of that?!?! What about Kotcman and Loney shoot that theory down also?1!?!?!?

        This success may not all fall on Shelton’s lap, but I truly believe the take pitches approach was more to blame for the lack of hitting success of our young players over most of his tenure. How do you coach and improve young players when you’ve basically reduce them to seeing 3 or 4 pitches and constantly seeing crap when down 2 strikes? THAT was MADDON AND FRIEDMAN.

        • Geoff Peterson says:

          I don't usually defend Shelton but we can hardly give him blame for Cabrera's decline without also giving him credit for being Cabrera's hitting coach during his 3 all star years in Cleveland.

        • Ken says:

          Tampa Bay Rays are batting .244 as a team, with a .308 OBP, a .383 SLG and a OPS of .692. Hardly numbers a hitting coach would hang his hat on during a job interview.

          • Jim says:

            I said they were swinging more and not taking looking to walk.

            Can you please show me the stats where Longo is hitting way below his career average? Or just keep tlalking out of your ass and making up stuff like how veterans don't hit well here, please keep it up. Your "facts" are amusing.

          • Jim says:

            We're producing those numbers with a AAA roster, a rookie DH, and a catcher hitting 50pts under his weight. I think that's pretty impressive. Imagine how good we would be if only longo was hitting near his career average.....

  2. Rob says:

    The gif of Archer reminds me of Charlie Brown.

  3. Rob says:

    By the way, the Rays used fewer relievers on bullpen day than they did yesterday. Didn't see that coming. It's pretty amazing we can trot a foursome like Gomes, Jepsen, McGee, and Boxberger out there in the 6th, 7th, 8th, and 9th innings like that. Talk about shortening a game.

  4. Gus says:

    For whatever reason, this team can come back and win games even when they spot another team an early lead. In 2011-2014, he Rays got behind and stayed behind. This team fights a little more. And seemingly hits a lot more.

    Kudos to Cash, Silverman and the coaching staff for all they have done in the face of a ton of adversity. I think having guys who are fighting to stay in the majors makes a huge difference. And a couple of savvy, well-traveled vets like DeJesus and Butler have been huge.

    • monte says:

      Butler is well-travelled only in the minors. He's definitely a pleasant surprise. Let's hope he can keep it up for as much as 6 years.

  5. edward williams says:

    alright so i had a whole thing typed about shelton, both good and bad, it got deleted somehow, my fault, so all i will say is i wish him the best this year, can't hurt the team that way and GO RAYS!!!!!!!!!

  6. Starmand says:

    I think I know why the Rays are an MLB-best 21-11 on the road.

    They feed-off the crowds. It's strangely satisfying when a team is able to silence a crowd.

  7. BigMo says:

    Let's not get too carried away about the offense quite yet. Pitching is why we are winning for sure. The Rays have the 3 least runs scored in the AL. only Seattle and White Sox have less. Yes, I do believe that the timely hitting is much bettter. I think it has more to do with Cash's great job of pinch hitting substitutions than any thing else at this point.


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