Joe is back with his post-game thoughts…

OK, OK, Joe knows that so much is made and mocked about Merlot Joe’s seemingly wine-induced lineups that the joke is almost old. But those heralded/dreaded matchups caught up with Merlot Joe and the Rays this afternoon.

With the likes of Drew Sutton batting cleanup and Jose Wobegon batting fifth, it made ordinary White Sox hurler Chris Sale look like Steve Carlton. Good grief, the 15 strikeouts Sale racked up against the Biscuits Rays in seven innings is simply outrageous.

Yeah, Joe gets that the Rays usually overcome this impotent offense because of pitching, but rookie Matt Moore (who pitched wonderfully) was on the mound. Moore, who has been a bit shaky this season, could have used perhaps Wolverine starting and even strikeout king Carlos Pena. At least those guys have a chance to get lucky and produce a little offense.

It just seems to Joe that Moore was in a no-win situation, and that just seems wrong, all but setting up a guy to lose. Doesn’t anyone think giving him some offense would take pressure off the guy and perhaps boost his confidence?

Again, Moore pitched great, no issue there. But if the Rays can’t even muster a pair of runs against a guy like Sale, Joe doesn’t know what more to say?



  1. ed says:

    I agree with everything you said, i always thought that you play your best players. But joe sometimes makes you wonder. I have been watching post game show, but nothing is being said about the lineup. I know these guys need days off, ( weren't they just off) but you play the game to win. Not saying that the white sox pitcher wasn't good , but he wasn't exactly pitching against our big players either. oh well, go get them tomorrow. GO RAYS

  2. ChrisFromNaples says:

    You underrate Sale.

  3. Michael says:

    You wouldn't think Sale is "ordinary" if you read anything about him this year.

    He's the real deal.

  4. Dave L says:

    All our hits, 3 and walks, 2 came from the right side. If you think Pena or Scott would have done anything better against this lefty with wicked stuff you are dreaming. Scott and Pena are batting 161 and 188 respectively and Sale is not ho hum. Joyce may have got something accomplished but unlikely.

    Moore pitched great today that lineup was mashing and he shut them down. Holding them to 2 runs was much more impressive than them holding us to 1 run especially against a quality lefty. As i noted in the pregame our only hope was to get to the bullpen and we couldnt.

    With Longo and Jennings gone, quality lefties were going to be trouble, we all knew that.

    Trotting out 3 left handed bats would not have improved our chances at all.

    If we play GREAT for the rest of the year we will lose 1 out of 3 at least so get used to it.

    Today was a great game and we stayed close and got beat.

  5. Dave L says:

    "Wobegon" got 1 hit and 1 BB BTW and our only RBI in place of Scott.

    He wasnt the problem.

  6. don says:

    0ne (1) run and 15 strikeouts on your own field...enough said...poor hitting effort...nothing else
    Maddon was proud of the effort...and the lineup..made up when he was riding his bike and seen a vision...were you surprised?

    • Dave L says:

      No. Not surprised ANY Rays lineup struggles against a great performance by a lefty starter against us until we get Longo and Jennings back.

      You have been railing against Pena for weeks. Lobaton produced in place of Scott. You can dream that Joyce would have somehow crushed Sale I guess.

      Blaming Maddons lineup against a wicked lefty is lazy, simplistic analysis but expected I guess.

  7. ChrisFromNaples says:

    You live by the Maddon, you die by the Maddon.

    As it turns out, putting Lobaton in there turned out to be a good move. If Dunn swings and misses instead of going all Bryce Harper on the right field wall, we wouldn't be second guessing the lineup. And a year from now, there won't be anyone calling Sale 'ordinary'.

    As a side note, does anyone else get pissed when ESPN says "Chris Sale, from Florida Gulf Coast College".. IT'S UNIVERSITY !!!!!!

    • Sarah says:

      Sorry, Chris, no one else gets pissed when ESPN fails to identify Florida Gulf Coast as a university. I save my ire for all the times ESPN says the Rays play in Tampa.

      • ChrisFromNaples says:

        Heh, you would think an organization with as many resources as DisneyABC.. they could use the school's correct name.


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