Thursday, April 24, 2008

The Morning After: Game 21

Blue Jays 3 (10-12), Rays 5 (10-11)

Another day at Disney, another win. The Rays are now 5-0 when playing in Orlando.

MVP: Carl Crawford


  • Hammell gave the Rays another solid performance. He is never spectacular, he is never dominating, but he always seems to give the team a chance to win. What more can you ask for from the fifth starter in your rotation? Tonight, he was probably better than usual. If it wasn't for Matt Stairs he would have had a really good night. Stairs is the definition of a professional hitter. I think that Hammell has proved that he deserves to be a major league starting pitcher.
  • Crawford is completely out of his early season slump. He got two hits (one a triple) and he scored two runs. As Carl goes so goes the offense. He seems to provide a spark that ignites the rest of the guys and leads to rallies.
  • Longoria had a huge hit to tie the game up in the bottom of the 6th. The bases were juiced and Carlos Pena had just struck out for the second out of the inning. Longoria stepped in there and delivered an opposite field single. Clutch. His fielding was also really good the whole game.
  • It is great to have Pena back at first base. He made a couple of picks that Hinske almost certainly would not have come up with.
  • Wheeler and Percy did it again. Wheeler have up only one hit in two innings of work and Percy continued his dominance with another perfect ninth inning. I am hoping that Wheeler has done enough to prove that he deserves the setup job after Reyes comes back from injury.
  • Hinske didn't have an amazing game, but he came through with another clutch hit. His RBI single in the 6th gave the Rays the lead and allowed Maddon to bring in the big guns (Wheeler and Percival) to close things down.
  • Pena just does not look good with the bat. He came up with one out and the bases juiced in the 6th. I was talking to my buddy on the phone and I told him that Pena was going to strike out. Pena proceeded to strike out, missing a 1-2 curve by about a foot. That is not a good feeling to have with your clean-up hitter.
  • The Rays had no answer to Matt Stairs all night long. He hit two home runs and damn near hit two more. His two outs were deep drives to the warning track that were luckily knocked down by the wind.

Another night, another big win for the Rays. This was not a game they were favored to win. It was the Rays number 5 starter against the Blue Jays number 1 starter. And that number one starter happens to be Roy Halladay. The Rays are now guaranteed to win the series. This should be a confidence boosting win. Tomorrow will be McGowan (he of the absurd mutton chops) against Sonny. This is definitely a winnable game and I think the Rays are going to come away with the sweep.

News and Notes
  • Extra Innings was only showing the Toronto broadcast of the game. The damn Canadians must of called BJ Upton "Justin" at least ten times.
  • Apparently, in Canada they like to stick commercials in between at-bats. No, I am not joking.
  • This is completely unrelated to baseball, but I am watching Inside the NBA on TNT and Kenny Smith just made a "Kobe Bryant" like video of himself jumping a car. Hilarious. If you haven't seen it, you need to YouTube in right now. Honestly, it is the the funniest thing I have seen in a long time. They showed it to Kobe when they were interviewing him. Just fantastic.

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