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: Juan Cruz. Another scoreless inning (his 5th) and it is starting to look like Cruz has one of the final 3 bullpen spots locked up…Heart of the Order. Johnny Damon, Evan Longoria and Manny Ramirez went a combined 6-7 with 2 doubles and a home run by Manny. BJ Upton also added his 2nd home run…Bullpen. In addition to Cruz’ performance, 6 relievers pitched, all of whom could be on the opening day roster. Those 6 combined for 7.1 innings, striking out 7 and walking 2. The only run came off of Andy Sonnanstine in his 2 innings of work late.

THE BAD: Rough Start. Jeremy Hellickson had already seen his spring delayed because of a hamstring issue. Now he has a blister issue. Yesterday he was pulled in the middle of the 2nd inning because of a blister on his right ring finger.

THE TELLING: To nobody’s surprise, David Price will be the Rays’ opening day starter. James Shields will start game 2…Manny Ramirez requested to make today’s trip to Jupiter (via Roger Mooney). That is a 150 mile trip that future Hall-of-Famers typically won’t make…Wade Davis has been scratched from his scheduled start today due to the flu. Cory Wade will start.


  • Joe Maddon says Jeremy Hellickson will be fine for his next start. []
  • BJ Upton and Justin Upton are featured in a new New Era ad campaign. [The Heater]
  • The two candidates for Mayor in Tampa were asked about the Rays stadium issue. Both want the Rays in Tampa, which of course pissed off Bill Foster, the mayor of St. Pete. []

Here is hoping we see Dirk Hayhurst again this season. Dave did not reject this Garfoose autograph when the Rays played at Al Lang






  1. Charles says:

    Juan Cruz is looking like a great find, but BJ Upton's resurgence is to me the biggest thing we're seeing this spring so far. It's not just that he's hitting, it's that he looks laser-focused out there, like this is not the same guy people have accused in the past of taking plays off. The dude seems ready to rake. The biggest number to me so far is that BJ leads the team in spring at bats (32) but is near the bottom of the list in strikeouts (3) of the guys who have gotten significant at-bats. If we get this BJ Upton during the season and we have what looks like a healthy Manny, Damon, Longoria heart of the order, opposing pitchers better watch out!

  2. Joe says:

    Still cheering for Cruz along with McGee and Wade. Wade probably hasn't the worst chance of the 3 though as they will want a loogy and McGee is much more useful than that.

  3. Hans says:

    I second your Hayhurst statment.
    Gruz is playing very well, nice to see!

  4. Don says:

    I would like to see BJ do good..I really would.....but the day I see him NOT leaving home plate shaking his head with his finger in his ear two or three times a game I know things will be different till then practice games don't count!

  5. Joe says:

    I like Maddon's latest comment about McGee's slider. That he has gotten such good command of it so fast and he's a guy Joe can trust against righties. He added "if it continues to get better, things can get really interesting" First future closer comment dropped?

    It's on the Rays official site.


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