Saturday, April 25, 2009

Rays Round-up: Gross Swing Path edition

One of the great things about Joe Maddon's managerial style is when he does stuff like writing a line-up based on "swing path."  That's what happened last night when Maddon went for Gabe Gross over Ben Zobrist in right field.  We all know that Zorilla has the hot hand, but Maddon went with gross because he his "swing path" matched up better with A's starter Trevor Cahill.  What did Gross do? He rewarded Maddon by going 2 for 2 with a homer and a double of Cahill.  Wow!

As for the rest of the game, the Rays did much like they did Wednesday night.  They feasted on a young, inexperienced pitcher early and went for the jugular.  Carlos Pena had 2 homers... racking up his 14th multi-homer game of his career.  Jason Bartlett continued his hot hitting going 4-5 at the bottom of the order.

The Kazmanian Devil got his 3rd win of the season last night, giving the big 3 at least 1 win in the go through the rotation.   Matt Garza gets the ball tonight in a Steve Carlton Syndrome game. The A's are sending lefty Dallas Braden to the mound. The Rays hitters will have to show the can get the bats going against a run-of-the-mill lefty tonight.

Here's some of what others had to say this morning. As always, my comments are in italics.

TBO talks about the Rays racking up K's and says Maddon would like to see the Rays batters strike out less often.  I'm sure that's something we'd all like to see.  If the Rays would just take strikeouts and short pop-ups out of their arsenal, they'd be unbeatable.

The Oakland Tribune has last night's game from the perspective of their rookie pitcher.  The Rays did a good job of taking advantage of the young pitcher's mistakes.  At least they're beating the righties they're supposed to. Now, if they can only take down some of those lefties.

In case you're wondering, the Boston Red Sox are hot... real hot. They won their 8th in a row last night in a dramatic come-from-behind victory of the the New York Yankees.  The Sox have only lost 2 games at home all year, both against the Rays.  This series against Oakland is important so the Rays can gain some ground while the Sox/Yankees battle each other.  The Rays need to return home following this series and the next against Minnesota on a roll to battle this hot Red Sox team.

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