Sweep Caroline

 

Red Sox 0, Rays 3

 

Sorry for the odd re-write of that Neil Diamond classic, but it is a classic Fenway 7th inning song. It only seemed fitting to use it as a backdrop on a superb pitching performance by both teams’. Boston’s Josh Beckett struck out a personal best 13 Rays’, and James Shields help secure a sweep of the mighty Red Sox.

 

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Trivia Fact of the Day:

The win today put the Rays 3 games over .500 for the first time since they were 3-0 in 2002.

 

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Good the Bad and the Ugly            Good the Bad and the Ugly     Good the Bad and the Ugly

 

                             

                                             The Good,The Bad,and The Ugly

 

                                                      The Awfully Good

 

The last two nights we have seen each team produce a pitching marvel. Last night, Red Sox rookie Chad Buchholz was in control for most of the game. But, today it was all James Shields. Shields, improved to 3-1, pitched a 2 hit shutout of the Boston Red Sox before  32,363 screaming fans. The pitching was so good, Boston only stranded two baserunners all game long. Sheilds ended the day with 7 strikeouts and 1 walk.

 

Honorable mention “Good Guys:

 

*** Leftfielder Carl Crawford hit a ball deep into right center that fell to the turf. Carl raced past second and tried to get his third triple of the weekend, but was thrown out by rightfielder J D Drew. Carl did get an RBI when Jason Bartlett crossed the plate to run the score to 3-0. Crawford went 1-4 to raise his average to an even .300.

 

** Shortstop Jason Bartlett was “Johnny on the spot ” today as he scored two of the Rays runs. The first came on a fielding error by Red Sox first baseman Kevin Youkilis. After the ball squirted into the Rays bullpen area, rightfielder J D Drew sent a ball that was moving slowly on the ground back into the Sox’s infield. Bartlett went from first to home on the play and scored the first run of the game.

 

Rookie Evan Longoria hit a massive homer to left center today that sealed the victory for the Rays. Longoria, who was very impressive in the field today with great high pressure out to Carlos Pena. Longoria’s homer was his second since being called up, and helped raise his average to .273. He also got his 10th RBI of the season on that blast.

                                      

                                                The Bad

The fact that Sox speedster Manny Ramirez stole a base on Dioner Navarro today is a sign that the Red Sox do not fear Navarro’s arm on the basepaths. It was Manny’s first steal since 2005.

 

The fact that the Rays were struck out 13 times today by starter Josh Beckett is a testimony to the pitching that is within our division. Boston was not sure of which Beckett would show up today since this was his first start since coming off the D.L.

 

Top “K” honors for the Rays goes to:  A tie between Aki Iwamura and B J Upton who each had 3 strikeouts.

 

                                         The Ugly

 

Again, the umpiring crew drew the ire and the jeers from the Trop faithful for bad plays and calls for both squads. Jason Bartlett was hit in the head by Red Sox pitcher  Manny DelCarmen in the bottom of the 8th inning. That play ended up being the last run scored by the Rays.

 

Also an ugly sight for Red Sox fans was the sitting of DH David Ortiz for the second day after he did a head first slide into first on Friday night. Ortiz is day-to-day with the injury.

 

Former Ray of the Day:

 

For two days this weekend, the player of the day is former Rays’ catcher Raul Cassanova. He went 3-4 today with 2 RBI’s to increase his average to .333 for the season.

 

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