Rain Dampens More than Turf in Loss

 

Rays 3, Red Sox 7

 

 

Rain can do a number on you mentally. It can make you get into your future situation and linger with positives and negatives. It can make you get edgy and feel confined and isolated. It can work to start early muscle fatique and mentally drain you of energy. Now, the Red Sox rain gods did not doom the teams to another day, but the game did get started at 9:30 last night and did make both teams a bit lackluster and dull until they mentally ” woke up”.

The result was a Rays loss.

 

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Trivia Fact of the Night:

The average ” in play” life expectancy of a major league baseball is 7 pitches.

 

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The Good, The Bad and the Ugly - Faces T-Shirt                                      The Good, The Bad and the Ugly - Faces T-Shirt

 

                                        

                                             The Good,The Bad,and the Ugly

 

 

 

                                                  The Good

 

The “Good” of last night’s game is the fact we finally got to play it around 9:30-ish last night. On this roadtrip, the Rays have had a few incidents were the elements have been playing with them. In Baltimore, all three games had a hint of rain, with the shower gods letting only a few minutes of downpour ruin that series.

 

In Boston, the entire series has the chance of rain, with tonight’s game also having a better than good chance of repeating a late start.

 

Honorable mention “Good” guys:

 

*** Rays first baseman Carlos Pena is finally coming out of his batting funk. Yesterday he got his first RBI in awhile, and today he went 2-4 to raise his average to .212 for the season. Carlos is stuck on 6 homers this year, but is looking more relaxed at the plate. He is a career .301 hitter at Fenway.

 

** Rays shortstop Jason Bartlett has been hitting and fielding better since his nagging shoulder has healed a bit. He also went 2-3 last night, with a double to raise his average to .240.

 

* Carl Crawford is riding another hitting streak and is hitting the ball alot better in the last few days. He also went 2-4 last night with a double  and is hitting .299 for the year.

 

 

                                   

 

                                              The Bad

 

Edwin Jackson looked out of sorts last night after the rain delay in Boston. He did not have his ususal control and seemed to rush his pitches to the plate.

 

Jackson did get his composure in gear late in the first innig, but the Red Sox bats came alive in the bottom of the 4th inning and put the game out of reach for the Rays. Edwin  is now 2-3 and his ERA ballooned to 4.98 for the year. Jackson did get 4 strikeout, but also gave up 3 walks to the Red Sox.

 

 

 

I am going to review the MLB TV broadcast of the game and see if Rays rookie Evan Longoria ran threw a “stop sign” put up by Rays third base coach Tom Foley last night. The play could have beeen a ignitor to better things last night had Longoria not been tagged out by Jason Varitek at home. The slide was a bit weak, but Varitek is not your usual catcher, and made the play with ease.

 

                                                    The Ugly

 

The main ugly I want to address is why the Bosotn Red Sox, a two-time World Series Champion has not put money into their visiting clubhouse to upgrade, expand or even eliminate the cramped space with a MLB-worthy locker room.

 

Now the answer is actually pretty simple. but it is a bit sneaky. The cramped, century old style lockroom is designed to be a mental note to the unimportance of the visiting team. It is made to get into their heads and disrupt the process that this game is “in the bag”, or that you do not have to earn your wins at Fenway.

 

The Red Sox have put in new batting cages under the stands for both teams, but at the expense of no new lockerroom expansion or even renewal. Mentally being cramped in that small space can be demeaning to the psyche and play on your thoughts at times.

 

When I was at Florida, we used to have to go up to Knoxville to play the University of Tennesse at their stadium. The visiting lockerroom was small, and the team pumped the song, “rocky Top” into the room through the speakers in the ceiling. there was no volume knob or way to shut it off to even talk to each other. That did play into our minds and did finally drive a few of us a bit batty before the game.

 

Never under estimate the little things that can defeat the mind in sports. It is a free advantage for your opponent, and will be used without recourse.

 

 

Former Rays Player of the Night:

                         

The player of the night is former Rays Randy Winn who has been with the San Francisco giants for a few season. Winn went 3-5 last night to up his average to .261 for the year.  Randy’s team fell to the Philadelphia Philles in 10 innings last night, 6-5.

You might remember a few years ago when Winn won a car for his mother with a half court shot during a Golden State Warriors’ NBA game. No word on if the car is still active and running.

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