Rays Perfect in Disney Series

 

Blue Jays 3, Rays 5

 

The Rays finish their second Orlando series with a perfect record again this season. They are currently 6-0 in the confines of the Disney Sports complex.

 

 Last year they swept the Texas Rangers in Champions stadium. With tonight’s win, the Rays win three games in a row for the first time this season. They also record their first “home” sweep since the Rangers series in Orlando last season. This is the only series the Rays have swept  at “home” since June 2006.

 

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Trivia Fact of the Night:

“A hot dog at the ballpark is better than a steak at the Ritz”.

                        — Humphrey Bogart, in a film ad for organized baseball

 

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                                The Good,The Bad,and The Ugly

 

                                              The Good

You would think that I would be pining for Evan Longoria tonight as my top star after his triple in the bottom of the 4th inning.  And, for once you would be right. Longoria went 2-2 tonight, raised his average to .282,got an RBI and scored a run. Not a bad night for a rookie in his first month in the majors.

 

Longoria is nightly showing the mindset of the Rays front office was right to secure his services and make him a Ray for years to come in St. Petersburg, Florida. Evan also hit a Sacrifice Fly to score a run. Longoria also got his third double of the year, and stole third in the bottom of the 7th innning.

He did everything but sell tickets and grill the hot dogs tonight.

 

Honorable mention “Good” guys:

 

*** Rays starting pitcher Andy Sonnanstine was not as skillful  as his last outing, but “Sonny” got it done to earn his third victory of the season. Andy tossed 6.1 innings of three hit ball and minimized the Toronto bats for much of the game.

              

** Dioner Navarro has done nothing wrong at the plate since coming off the DL for this series in Orlando. Dioner is currently hitting .444, and stroking the ball great to all fields. Navarro actually batted right-handed in the bottom of the 5th inning scoring Carlos Pena  to put the Rays ahead 5-3.

 

* Carl Crawford is seeing the baseballs like huge basketballs right now. Crawford now has a 11 game hitting streak and has upped his average to .302 for the year. Carl went 3-5 tonight with two stolen bases to raise that total to 7 for the year.  Carl is currently tied with Boston’s Jacoby Ellsbury for the American League lead in runs score with 19.  

                                         

                                                  The Bad

 

Rays first baseman Carlos Pena is stuck on 6 homers and 13 RBIs right now. Pena  is still tied with Manny Ramirez, Joe Crede and Casey Kotchman for the American League home run title with 6.  Since April 13, he has hit .163 with no homers, RBI’s and has struck out 11 times. Last night, Pena struck out 4 times in the game.

 

B J Upton almost made a great catch in center tonight before the Orlando wind took the ball and turned B J around and rewarded Torontos’ Aaron Hill with a ground rule double. the ball hung up in the wind and swirled a bit before turning B J  left then right, and the ball fell to the turf and bounced over the centerfield wall for the double.  Hill ended up scoring after a Sonnanstine wild pitch to put the Blue Jays up 3-2.

                                              The Ugly

Two nights in a row we have an ugly scene at the plate involving Dioner’s mental thinking and forgetting the play wa stills live on the field. Tonight’s episode involves a Sacrifice bunt by the Blue Jays’ David Eckstein in the top of the third inning.

 

 Navarro came out to field the bunt in front of the plate, and throw to first for the out. But Dioner forgot to cover the homeplate and Jays’ catcher Greg Zaun sneaked in under the tag by Navarro for the first run of the game.

 

This is the second night in a row that Navarro has been caught in “No-mans’ land” and has not been able to convert an out on a play at the plate.  If Dioner was not carrying a  red hot bat right now, he might find himself on the bench watching Shawn Riggans playing instead of himself.

 

Wake up Dioner, you are a great catcher who is learning more every day to take over this young stable of pitchers. Do not ruin it by thinking outside of the lines and costing your team valuable runs scored against them.

 

 

Former Rays of the Night:

 

Tonight’s former Ray is New York Mets utility guy, Marlon Anderson. Anderson came up in the top of the 9th as a pince hitter for pitcher  Pedro Feliciano, and hit a homer in only his second hit of the season.

The reason he is my nightly guy, is that it was a clutch hit, and that is what veterans do, they hit the ball when runs or baserunners’ are needed. It also doesn’t hurt that I know the passion and drive Marlon has in him from his time with the Rays. Clutch hitting can win you games in the late season and beyond.

 

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