Rays Athletics Baseball

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

click above image for boxscore

THE GOOD: Big year for El Gato. We envisioned a big season for Carlos Pena with Pat Burrell protecting him in the lineup. And so far he is not disappointing. 2 more home runs last night and 8 on the season leads the AL. Let’s put the over/under now at 45…Gabe of the Day. Gabe Gross got the start in right field once again proving that Joe Maddon is a mad genius or the luckiest bastard ever. Gross ended the first by throwing out a runner at the plate. And then led off the 2nd inning with a home run. He finished 2-3 and was on base 4 times…The Svelte Catcher. Dioner Navarro stole a base. We repeat, Dioner Navarro, stole second base…Jason Bartlett. Barty had 4 more hits in 5 at bats, including 3 infield singles.

THE BAD: Scott Kazmir. OK, it wasn’t really bad. 6 shutout innings is still 6 shutout innings. But that might have been the worst 6 shutout innings you will ever see. It took him 69 pitches to get through the first 3 innings. And that included 2 (!) double plays, or else it would have been much, much worse…Retribution gone wrong. After giving up a home run in the 2nd inning to Gabe Gross, Trevor Cahill tried to hit or brush back Gross his next time up. One problem. The pitch hit the dirt about 5 feet in front of Gross.

THE TELLING: Today’s game will not be televised due to blackout restrictions.

SUNBURST PLAYER OF THE GAME: Carlos Pena. This could end up being Pena’s best season yet.


  • Matt Garza feels he put too much pressure on himself in his last start and plans to top get back to what he does. [Tampa Tribune]
  • Joe Maddon admits that strike outs are something Rays hitters will do (a lot) but would like to see fewer strikeouts in certain situations. [Tampa Tribune]
  • At the bottom of this Marc Topkin piece, we see that sports psychologist Ken Ravizza has joined the team this weekend. Ravizza is a longtime friend of Joe Maddon and is credited with helping Matt Garza last season…Any chance Ravizza is going to spend some time with Jeff Niemann? [St. Pete Times]
  • Missed this one earlier…Ben Badler takes a look at Desmond Jennings hot start. [Baseball America]
  • Desmond Jennings also came in at #2 on Baseball America’s “Prospect Hot Sheet.” [Baseball America]
  • The Rays do not have a sacrifice bunt yet this season. [The Rays Party]
  • Rays the Stakes wonders what happened to the Rays all-star catcher. [Rays the Stakes]





  1. GatorRaysHead says:

    It may not have been pretty, but 6 shutout innings giving up only 2 hits does not qualify as bad. We will win 9 out of 10 games with that kind of performance. Kaz just needs to find the K zone earlier.
    Navi also needs to remember to catch the ball. That should be a bad. No way Kaz should have been charged with a wild pitch there.
    Also, no mention of Balfour? His velocity is back. I was getting worried after his first few outings but he was back to popping that 96+ fastball last night.

    • my thing with Kazmir last night is that was an awful offensive team and if it weren't for some luck and a couple of great defensive plays he probably gives up 3 runs in the first 3 innings and is pulled after 4 because of his pitch count.

      Navi has been uncharacteristically bad behind the plate this season.

      Yes, Balfour probably deserved a nod. I think it helped that he came into a game with a 8-0 lead. There was ZERO pressure on him and he could just relax and rear back and let it fly. He seemed to be in his head earlier this year.

      • GatorRaysHead says:

        Kaz had no command of his fastball last night and he still pitched 6 scoreless innings. The only time there was really a scare was when Navi forgets to catch the ball when there are runners on base. Cut the guy some slack. I dont remember him being bailed out by a bunch of great defensive plays either. Just typical Rays D. It was also good to see him start pitching to contact once we got the big lead.

  2. Michael says:

    Update the Kazmir win count on the right side to 50 when you get done slamming him for his 6 shutout, 2-hit innings?

    • Sean G says:

      have your expectations for Kaz fallen so far that you now consider 6 innings a good start? I can count on one hand the number of pitchers in the league that would be throwing a shutout and need to be pulled after 6. And let's not forget the A's are the worst offense in the league.

    • Dirtbag Fan says:

      Michael: Did u seriously just try to tell Prof what to do on his own blog?

      If you actually watched the game you'd know it was ugly. Yes, he gets credit for 6 scoreless, but he didn't deserve such a favorable outcome.

  3. Dirtbag Fan says:

    I believe the road to 300 should read the big 50 !!!


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