Thursday, April 16, 2009

Morning Round-up: Bullpen edition

Rough way to end the series for Rays fans.  Losing to the Evil Empire two games in a row.  The bullpen looks like crap. The bats cooled off after Monday. And the only team with a worse record in the AL East is the Boston Red Sox.  Couple of interesting notes in the morning round-up especially the connection between Lou Piniella and Rod Blagojevich's connection. Also, some fan photos from yesterday's game.  The theme: Yankee fan at the Trop

-Most of the New York writers were busy setting the stage for tonight's big opener for the new Yankee stadium. However, NY Daily News writer John Harper glows about the emergence of Brian Bruney as a set-up man for Mariano Rivera. He went as far to say "the bullpen could be the one area where the Yankees have a significant edge over the Rays." Can't say I disagree with him. Coming into the series, the eighth inning seemed to be a real problem with the Yanks bullpen especially after the blown opportunity against the Royals. But, these two games have shown us that the Yankees bullpen (and starting pitching for that matter) has the ability to shut down the Ray.

-The Yankees say they're happy to finish up their nine game road trip with a win against a good team. The Yankees are good. If Rays fans had any doubts that the Rays were in for an AL East dogfight this year, this series should erase those doubts.  On a positive note, this series is eerily similar to what happened when the Yanks visited the Trop year. The only difference was that was 4 game set and we split.

-The Chicago White Sox actually altered their rotation so Ray-killer John Danks can face a team he loves pitching against. This is why Pat Burrell is on the team. He needs to step up today and earn his check.

-Completely off-topic, but amusing nonetheless, former Rays manager Lou Piniella got advice in 2007 from ousted-Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.  The former governor gave Sweet Lou some line-up changes he'd like to see. The Chicago Tribune has the hand written note.

And finally, Rays Revolutionary contributors Jeff from Auburndale and Bud from Spring Hill were at the Trop yesterday. This is the first in my series of themed fan pics. I asked them to take some pictures of Yankees' fans so we could get a sense of how many invaded Rays territory. They say it looks like there are less Yankee fans than in years past, but there will still a few.

Theme: Yankee Fans at the Trop
Photos by Jeff & Bud

As you can see, this was 1 Yankee fan among many Ray fans in the outfield.

What Yankee fan does best. Get tanked in the early afternoon.

I'm not going to make a clever comment about this guy because I don't want him tracking me down and kicking my ass.

This guy wasted no time jumping on the Teixeira bandwagon.  You can get the same shirt in Rangers, Braves, and Angels colors.

Strawberry. Really? Is that the shirt you're wearing?

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