Rays Take Game Uno of Double Set
Hey all, we have another Rays player who has been nominated for the Marvin Miller Man of the Year Award. MLB players are some of the best contributors of time and money to local charties and events. And it is in this spirit that the MLB Players Association has annually, since 1977, awarded the Marvin Miller Award to a deserving MLB player. The Ray nominated by his teammate for this award is Rays reliever Trever Miller.
Trever Miller is a low key guy by nature and can always be counted on for a smile and a kind word for fans or his teammates. Miller is an active member in the community and gives his time and resources to various charitable organizations. He is an annual contributor to Barry Zito’s Strikeouts for the Troops and Miracle League’s B.O.D.’s for Florida. Miller hosts the annual Miracle League golf tournament and also dedicates time and money to the Ronald McDonald House and All Children’s Hospitals in St. Petersburg, Fla.
The award, named after the first executive director of the PA, is presented each year to a player elected by his peers as the one who best combines on-field performance with community service. Voting began this week on MLB.com and MLBPLAYERS.com, the PA’s official Website, and fans are asked to select one player from each of Major League Baseball’s six divisions.
The six finalists will be voted on by Major League players as part of their annual Players Choice Awards balloting Sept. 17 (Sept. 18 for Colorado Rockies and San Diego Padres players) at ballparks throughout North America to select the winner. So let’s get out there and vote for one of our own, reliever Trever Miller for the Man of the Year Award in 2008.
Rays Magic Number: 14
This is the number of combined Boston losses and Rays wins to secure their first A L East crown.
Evan Longoria fans can rejoice because the Rookie is back into the lineup, and by the way he was batting in that first game, is hitting like he has not missed a game this year. Longoria went 2-5, with 2 RBI’s in his frist game back since the August 6th injury in Seattle. In all, Longoria missed 28 games during his wrist injury and Evan showed early on that his defensive skills have also not been rusty since his DL visit.
Longoria first came up in the 2nd inning and got a single through the hole between short and third, and scored on Justin Ruggiano’s double to the rightfield wall. Longoria did have a hand on one of Derek Jeter’s singles today, but could not convert the play in time to get the quick shortstop. Longoria then came up in the 5th inning and got 2 RBI’s on a liner down the leftfield line. that scored Ruggiano and Jason Bartlett to put the Rays up 3-0. At that point in the game, Longoria had gone 2-3, with 2 RBI’s.
In the 6th inning, Longoria dove and stabbed a drive by Xavier Nady to the ground before throwing him out at first to end inning. Longoria was behind thrid base when he relased the ball and it was a strike to Carlos Pena.
Rays starter James Shields won his 13th game today with a great effort against the New York Yankees. Shields went 8 innings and gave up only 5 hits on the day to leave in the 8th inning with a shutout of the Yankees. In the contest, Jeter got 3 of the Yankees 8 total hits on the day. Shields used his change up to strikeout 6 Yankees batter in the contest.
The only run given up by the Rays today was by Rays reliever Trever Miller who came on in the 9th inning for Shields. Bobby Abreu hit a 0-2 count for a solo homer into the rightfield stands for the only Yankees score in the first game of the doubleheader.
Miller then gave up singles to Nady and Giambi before getting Hideki Matsui to line out to rightfield. Cody Ransom then got on base on a fielders choice that forced out Giambi at second base, and moved Nady into scoring position at third with 2 outs. Miller then got Robinson Cano to pop out to third on the 3rd pitch to end the first game of the double header with the Rays up 7-1.
An interesting note on new Rays catcher Michel Hernandez. He originally got up to the majors with the New York Yankees in 2003. In his 5 game September call-up. Hernandez went 1-4 for the Yankees. Also amazing is that this is the first time Hernandez has caught James Shields and the battery mates did not produce a passed ball or wild pitch all game. Hernandez went 1-5 in today’s contest ans scored on Ruggiano’s double in the 6th inning.
Ruggiano had a banner day for the Rays going 3-4, with 2 runs scored and 2 RBI’s on the day. He first got the Rays off to a 2-0 score when he doubled to the rightfield wall for his 3 rd double of the year. Fernando Perez scored along with Longoria to give the Rays the early lead. Ruggiano also singled to centerfield in the 5th inning.
During that 5th inning, Yankees catcher Jose Molina tried to pickoff Ruggiano at first base, but Ruggiano was able to slide into second safely after a bad throw by Yankee first baseman Jason Giambi. Ruggiano scored after Jason Bartlett singled to rightfield. Ruggiano was not done for the day, he also got another double in the 6th inning and was almost picked off after he fell rounding first base, but got into second in time to beat the throw. Ruggiano moved to thrid on Bartlett’s RBI Scarifice Fly and went home on Carlos Penas’ error to first in the inning.
There was a tense moment in the ball game after Shields hit Molina in the hip with a pitch and the catcher took exception to the pitch. TV camera caught Molina talking in terse terms to Pena at first base about the event. Two pitches later, when Johnny Damon hit a ball towards second base, Molina went out of the basepaths towards Ben Zobrist on a deliberate attempt to break up the double play. Second base umpire, Gerry Davis immediately signaled for the double play outs because of Runners Interference on Molina.
If Molina had stayed in the basepaths’ this would not have been called by the umpire. By the next time Molina was up to bat, all the tension from the hit by pitch was over and the game was without incident from that moment.
Jonny Gomes and 2007 First Round Draft pick, David Price arrived in New York for today’s doubleheader. Gomes played in the first game going 0-3 in the contest and playing rightfield for the Rays. Rays pitchers Jeff Neimann and Mitch Talbot will meet the team in St. Petersburg on Monday as the Rays begin their last 7 game homestand of the season.