Tuesday, June 16, 2009

CHEESE & WHINE: Day After an Off-Day


Red Sox 38-25
Yankees 36-27
Rays 34-31
Blue Jays 34-31
Orioles 27-36

  • The Rays used a nice series against the Angels (2-1) coupled with a fully-expected sweep of the Nationals to claw their way up to third place in the AL East standings. Now as they head into Colorado to face a red-hot Rockies team we'll find out exactly what the 2009 Rays are made of. Although this is an interleague series and not some knock-em down, drag-em out divisional rivalry I still consider this the most defining series of the season up to this point. If the Rays can win the 3-game set in Colorado, effectively putting together their first consistent run of the year, they can put the rest of the league on-notice that they are, indeed, still a team to be reckoned with. Am I saying that if they drop the Colorado series 2 games to 1 that they're ship will have sailed? No. But what I am saying is that unless the Rays want to enter the ranks of teams that are "tough to beat" or "can win any game" but just continue to wallow in pools of mediocrity, they need to be able to string together some 7 out of 10 streaks. Winning fifty five percent of your games may work in other divisions, but in the AL East that doesn't fly, the time to start turning potential into results is right now.
  • The long awaited return of the Rays' all-star shortstop, Jason Bartlett, is finally upon us. Having JB back in the lineup should be a major boost given his stellar OBP (.418) and well above average fielding ability.


  • Another season-ending injury for the Rays. This time its Jason Isringhousen who'll be hitting the DL never to return. Izzy suffered a torn UCL (elbow), and not only his season, but also his career may be over. Hopefully closers won't start being scared to come to Tampa Bay, as apparently its where relievers go to die.


  • To those of you who live in Florida: step outside today at around 4 o'clock and feel how ridiculously hot it is out there (and its only gonna get worse for the next 10 weeks). Now picture yourself sitting in that sun for 4 hours trying to watch a Thursday day-game in a nice, shiny, new, outdoor-air stadium. Pure hell.

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