Rays Quiet Yankees With Their Bats


Rays 7, Yankees 1


I thought I would not see the day when the Rays fans would out cheer the Yankee faithful who came to the Trop tonight. But it did happen, and the Yankees fans were heading for the exits after the last out in the 6th inning.

I know the team is without it’s usual plethra of superstars, but this Rays squad is pretty impressive on its own here.



Trivia Fact of the Night:

Last year at this juncture in the season, the Rays were in last place and were 7 games under .500. This season, the team is 6 games over .500 and a half a game out of first in the AL East.

Now that is a turn-around season.




The Good, the Bad and the Ugly PostersThe Good, the Bad and the Ugly PostersThe Good, the Bad and the Ugly PostersThe Good, the Bad and the Ugly Posters


                                    The Good,The Bad,and The Ugly


                                       The Good

Rays DH, Jonny Gomes had another “coming out” party tonight. Gomes has been the forgotten soul when the ?Rays DH’s have been mentioned in articles and Jonny made sure people knew he still had the heart and desire to play this game.

Gomes went 2-4 with 3 runs scored tonight and stole two bases. Jonny stole second in the 2nd inning off Yankee starter Andy Pettitte, one of the best pick-off artists in the league. He then repeated it by stealing third in the 4th inning.


Honorable Mention “Good” guys:


*** Evan Longoria played a superb defensive third base tonight. He robbed several Yankee batters of sure extra base hits down the line. Longoria also contributed with his bat, going 2-4 with 2 runs scored tonight. Evan is currently leading the AL rookies with 4 homers this season.

** Aki Iwamura is playing outstanding second base this year. He is one of two players at that position to yet make an error for the year. Iwamura is also in the middle of a 10 game hitting streak where he is hitting .391 during the streak. Aki tonight went 2-5 with 1 RBI.


* The nunber one star tonight goes to Dioner Navarro, who went 3-3 tonigt and is in the midst of his own hitting barrage. Dioner is currently batting .362 for the year. This is a mass improvement if you remember that at the All-Star break last year he was batting .177 for the team. Navarro also had 2 RBI’s tonight to raise his yearly total to 12.


                                          The Bad


In the middle of a great homestand, and a great surge in offensive and defensive “wins”. It is sometimes hard to see a bad thing on the surface. I do see a problem on the horizon, and I know it will hamper the Rays in the future.

The Rays left 10 men stranded on the base paths tonight. Carlos Pena(twice), Jason Bartlett and  Evan Longoria all left men in scoring position tonight. This is not a big stat right now, but in the close games, it can be the key to a victory, or a defeat. Coming through in the clutch, or raising the bar should be the ultimate goal of this team right now.

They are showing the hearts of champions, and the true grit of old-time players. They now need to commit to getting these guys around the bases and establish a rhythm for the offense.


                                                The Bad


I saw a blog title the other night that stated, “This is not your Daddy’s Rays team.” And that is totally true. This is a new era for our organization, and a true beginning in the fashion of winning games.

In comparision, the New York Yankees are having a down year due to injuries and unforseen problems with their pitching staff.

Has this put a damper on the rivalry between these teams. It has not been a problem keeping the morale up on either bench in this rivalry, but in the stands, that might be a different matter.

You see, the Yankees are hampered in this series by having their entire yearly visit to the Trop. scheduled during the weekdays. No weekend for the NY boys here. Just a few weeknights and a few scattered afternoon contests to showcase the kids and the Golden Rays to the new Rays team.

Is this showing up in the stands? I think it has so far this season. The Rays management can not be happy with the Yankees/Rays attendance so far this year. Tonight’s matchup only filled the Trop to 33.7 percent of its seats. And a major starting pitcher was on the mound tonight. A guy who might even be in the Hall of Fame someday. The announced attendance tonight was…………..13,932.

Does that sound like a Yankee crowd to you????



Former Rays player of the Night:



My Former Rays player of the Night is a personal favorite of mine. I knew this guy could play baseball the first time I saw him take BP at the Trop. He had magic in his bat, but personal things kept him from our outfield.

Josh Hamilton went 2-5 tonight against the Seattle Mariners in a game that lasted 10 innings. Josh had 4 RBI’s tonight to up his AL leading RBI total to 43 for the year. Hamilton is also hitting .306 for the year.

Josh also hit his 8th homer of the year to put him in a four-way tie for second in the AL.




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