KANSAS CITY: 2
- Matt Joyce. Joyce has come kickin' and screamin' into the Bigs; last night he finished 3 for 4 from the plate with another homer, a double, and 4 RBI. Joyce already has 3 times as many homers as Melvin Upton. Sadly, this may mark the end of the Gabe Gross era in Tampa, and its a dirty, rotten shame if Kapler stays and Gross goes based solely on handedness.
- Andy Sonnanstine. Sonny looked good last night, showing great control of his pitches and making very few mistakes (2 of which were sent into the bleachers). Sonnanstine lasted 6 and 2/3 innings allowing just 2 runs on 6 hits while striking-out 3 and walking 0. These are the sort of numbers that have kept Sonny in the rotation over the past 2 seasons, because for a 4 or 5-guy those numbers are spectacular. I'm fairly certain however, that Sonny's days in the rotation are numbered regardless.
- Ben Zobrist. Zorilla strikes again. Davies was pitching a very good game when along came Benny-Boo in the 4th and spoiled his night by smashing a fastball over the right field wall for his 9th homer of the season. That's 1 homer every 14 at bats. Good numbers for a bench player by any stretch of the imagination. Just to put that into perspective Carlos Pena is averaging a homer every 11 at bats.
- BJ Upton. I said several weeks ago that when Melvin began hitting, and got his batting average over .200 I'd give him his nickname back. Well guess what happened while I wasn't paying attention. Last night BJ went 2 for 3 with a double, a walk, and a steal. Upton is now sitting at .211.
- Grant Balfour. The Mad Aussie was up to his old tricks in relief of Sonny; facing 5 batters allowing 0 hits and striking out 3 in 1 and 1/3 innings.
- JP Howell. JP came-in in a save-type situation (although it wasn't actually a save situation due to the lead being more than 3 runs (at least that's how I understand it)), faced 3 batters allowed zero hits and struck-out 2 to end the game.
- Evan Longoria. Come on Dirt McGirt, what were you thinking? You can't get hurt- you're leading the universe in all-star votes, and the Devil Rays are in desperate need of your services.
- Pat Burrell. Did you forget that this dude was on the team? Stiff necks don't last 3 weeks- pre-existing spinal injuries do, label me a conspiracy theorist, I don't care. This is getting ridiculous.
- RISP. Once again the team was only 2 for 9 with runners in scoring position.
- Sonny now joins Garza, Niemann, Kazmir, and Shields with 4 wins on the season. Meaning that each of the original starting five now have 4 wins.
- Longoria says his hamstring is "okay", but the Devil Rays will administer an MRI today, and will approach the situation with the utmost caution.
CAVIAR (game ball):
Matt Joyce. Great showing in front of your home crowd, hopefully just a sign of things to come. This kid has the second prettiest swing on the team (Longoria), a thing of beauty.
*Honorable Mention: Andy Sonnanstine.