"Just dunk yourself, this thing is heavy."

“Just dunk yourself, this thing is heavy.”

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

RAYS 4, Astros 3 (boxscore)

THE GOOD: Was it good? Matt Moore worked 5 innings to pick up the win. He gave up 3 runs, striking out 3 and walking 3. What we, and Matt, need to realize is that the old Moore is probably gone. In 2011 Moore’s fastball was 96. In 2012 it was 95. In 2013, his last full season in the big leagues, it was 93. So far this season it is 92 and with less control and command. The control and command will come eventually. But the velocity might not. That’s exactly what we saw on Sunday. A 92 mph fastball with control and command that came and went…Brad Boxberger has rebounded nicely heading into the break. After back-to-back implosions against the Yankees and Royals, Boxy has allowed just 1 baserunner in his last 3 appearances, a walk. He also struck out 3 of the 10 batters he faced in that span…It’s not sexy and it’s not the 40 home run-power many fans would love the Rays to go out and get, but John Jaso is looking like that offensive spark the Rays need. In 7 games (6 starts) since coming off the DL, Jaso has 9 hits and 4 walks. In other words, he is an OBP machine just as we had hoped. Home runs are fun. But the Rays just won 3 games in a row with just 1 home run in the series…Jake McGee has not allowed a run since May 26, a span of 17 consecutive scoreless appearances (16.1 innings) with 23 Ks and 2 walks.

THE BAD: Kevin Jepsen now leads the AL with 42 appearances. He has pitched in 42 of the Rays’ 91 games so far. At some point that is going to backfire…Logan Forsythe is cooling off. He did have 2 hits on Saturday. But over his last 14 games he has just 7 hits and 4 walks with a whopping 15 strikeouts. Prior to that, Forsythe had a much more promising strikeout-to-walk ratio of 46-to-27 in 75 games.

THE TELLING: Asdrubal Cabrera went on the DL with a strained hamstring. Tim Beckham was called up to take his spot on the roster…Prospect Richie Shaffer batted clean-up for the US team in the Futures Game. He went 0-4 with 2 strikeouts. Another prospect, Blake Snell tossed a perfect inning in the US team’s 10-1 win…The 16 hits were the fewest for the Rays in a 3-game sweep in club history…The Rays have a winning record at the All-Star break for the 7th time in the last 8 years since becoming the Rays…Preston Guilmet was claimed on waivers by the Dodgers after being designated for assignment…The Rays are 46-45, 3.5 games behind the Yankees and in second place. The Rays are 3 games back in the Wild Card.


  • Everybody was “raving” about Drew Smyly’s “outstanding bullpen session.” [TampaBay.com]
  • Something we have already covered here in depth, but another take on the Rays only letting starting pitchers face the opposing lineup twice or just slightly more than that. [Yahoo! Sports]
  • Since 2000 in MLB, NFL, and NBA, the Rays rank 4th among all teams in payroll efficiency. [Nerd Wallet]
  • Ben Zobrist is one of the hottest targets as we near the trade deadline. [Amazing Avenue]
  • DOWN ON THE FARM [boxscores]Durham gave up 2 runs in the 11th inning, losing 3-1 to Gwinnett. Matt Andriese struck out 7 and walked none in 6 innings. He allowed just 1 unearned run. Boog Powell was 2-4 with a walk and his 2nd triple-A stolen base. He is 15-48 (.313) in 14 triple-A games…Montgomery managed just 5 hits in their 4-1 loss to Pensacola…Charlotte beat Brevard County 8-3 with Brent Honeywell striking out 6 and walking 1 in 6.1 innings, allowing 3 runs. Willy Adames was 2-4 with a walk. He is hitting .269…Chris Pike improved to 8-2 with a 3.18 ERA, allowing just 2 runs (1 earned) on 2 hits in 7 innings. He struck out 4 and walked 1.

Sometimes the ball goes up and it doesn’t come back down.


Chris Archer and Brad Boxberger flew first class to the All-Star game.





  1. phil says:

    who goes out of the rotation when Smiley comes back? any word on the how the rotation will be set up after the break ? I would go with Ordor; Karns Archer (give him a little break); Ramirez and Moore....

    • Rob says:

      I guess it would have to be Karns unless they try a 6-man rotation for the last month or two. Moore is the weakest link of the 6 (assuming Smyly comes back strong), but he's not going anywhere. Somehow these things always work themselves out though, which means you can probably expect to lose another guy to injury when it's time for Smyly to return.

  2. Geoff Peterson says:

    After a rough few weeks it's nice to see the Rays bounce back. Given the injuries and preseason gloom, I wonder how many of us would have picked the Rays to be 46-45 at the break prior to the start of the season. I'm not expecting any big additions but if the Rays can get healthy, they could compete down the stretch in an otherwise mediocre division. I don't expect the AL East to make any noise in the playoffs either way.


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