Rays Errors Cost Them the Series

Cardinals 5, Rays 4

 

Sunday was a celebration in St. Louis to honor a man who I met as a small child in Spring Training here in St. Petersburg, Florida. Stan Musial was a giant to me then as a kid, and is still a giant on any  ballfield.

Sunday was a day to honor Cardinals great number 6, and his legacy with the Cardinals. Stan came out to the stadium, swung his familiar swing to the crowd, and even gave a memorable speech to the throng of fans in the stands.

The team renamed the plaza in front of the stadium “Stan Musial Plaza,” and also established “Stan Musial Drive” as one of the throughfare surrounding the Busch Stadium.  If that was not enough, the Cardinals let Stan do his harmonica rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” on the television,and it was a remarkable sight to see the old guy smiling and having fun that day.

                         

As you might remember, Stan Musial was the first major leaguer to hit a home run out of Al Lang Field in St. Pete.

He was also one of the small group that threw out the ceremonial first pitch at the Rays first game against the Tigers’ on March 31, 1998.

 

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Trivia Fact of the Night:

Until 1859, the umpires often seated in padded chairs behind homeplate.

 

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Last Blog without the coveted “Good,The Bad,and The Ugly” in it. Tomorrow we are going into Oakland Stadium to take on the A’s. Now that we are back in the AL fold, we can fulfill our “GBU” feature again.

 

                                   

The Rays Carl Crawford hit a blistering solo homer to right center in the top of the 8th inning. The homer was Crawford’s 4th of the year. Carl is now hitting .282 for the season and has 28 RBI’s. Crawford is a lifetime .299 hitter during Interleague play.

 

                                

 

I want to take a second to congradulate Trever Miller for passing Doug Creek and becoming the most prolific lefty in Rays history. Yesterday, Tever worked his 141st game as the Rays passing Creek.

 

                    

 

Rays rookie third baseman Evan Longoria is currently number one in fielding percentage for his position in the AL with a .977 average. Longoria has been instrumental in the Rays renewed defense on the hot corner.

 

                          

 

The Rays again were playing aggressive ball and committed a few baserunning blunders in the game.  After a missed call by the umpire at third yesterday, Rays manager Joe Maddon was on the umpire crew on any inconsistancy in their call on Sunday. Rays rightfielder Eric Hinske was thrown out at second in the top of the second inning. The Rays however did steal two bases on Sunday. B J Upton and Ben Zobrist stole second on Kyle Lohse.

                         

Evan Longoria also got the offense started in the top of the second by scoring on the Eric Hinske double. Evan had connected on the ground rule double to deep right center earlier in the inning. Longoria  had a pair of two-hits nights in the first two games of this series, his first two of his career. Evan is batting .304 in his last 6 games.

 

                               

 

 Rays reliever Dan Wheeler is probably glad to be leaving St. Louis tonight, and hopes to not see the Cardinals’ Ryan Ludwick any time soon. Ludwick victimized Wheeler twice in this series for huge homers, and was a constant threat on the basepaths.

 

                               

 

Akinora Iwamura went 2-4 today with a double in the top of the 3rd inning. Iwamura scored after BJ Upton’s double in the same inning.

Aki is now hitting .276 for the season. He has also hit safely in 14 of his last 15 games for the Rays.  Since April 24, Aki has reached base via a hit or walk in 21 straight games and is batting .330 during that span.

                              

Rays starter Edwin Jackson must feel a bite snakebit lately in his starts. In his last three starts, Jackson was in line for a win, but a bullpen error cost  Jackson a victory.

Edwin has 5 quality starts this season, tied for first on the team. Jackson went 5.1 innings against the Cards and gave up 1 run on 6 hits before leaving the game with a 3-0 lead. Jackson has now thrown 20  straight scoreless innings for the Rays. Edwin won his first two starts of the season, but is winless since the Mariners’ victory 7-0 at home on April 10th.

                                  

Rays shortstop Ben Zobrist had about 60 friends and family in the stands for Sunday’s game. He was not penciled in to start the game before Rays manager Joe Maddon sat Jason Bartlett out because of a flu bug going through the Rays clubhouse.

Zobrist made the most of his opportunity getting his first two hits of the season and raising his average to .333. Zobrist’ hit two doubles todays  and scored after stealing third and advancing on the Cardinals catchers  throwing error.

 

Because the Rays are playing on the West Coast tonight in Cali., the game will not be broadcast before 9:30 P.M. I will be posting my blog about the game at 8-ish on Tuesday to get some sleep and come up with more great stats and trivia for your enjoyment.  Have a great day and …………..”GO RAYS!”

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