Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Walmart of the MLB

So Julie and I went to the Rays game and were grateful to be there. There is always a bit more on the line when the Yankees come to town (Take that Boston!).

The Rays are kind of the Walmart of MLB. Julie kept reminding last night when I would complain about the talent differential that it is much more gratifying to earn the win than to buy the win.

Robinson Chirinos was called up yesterday to play in his first major league game (because another rookie catcher got hurt the night before in his first career start). He doubled in his first at bat. Derek Jeter walked over to him from shortstop and congratulated him on his first career hit. The Yanks have a guy with 3,000 hits and the Rays have a guy with one career hit.

Later in the game the Yanks were batting in the ninth inning of a tie game. The bases were loaded and there were two outs. Alex Torres had just been called up from the minors and due to how the game developed and the length of the game on Sunday he was pitching. You could tell he was a bit rattled after walking a guy so Chirinos went out to the mound to calm him down. It was then that I realized I was watching a catcher in his first major league game talking to a pitcher pitching in his first major league game and their job was to defeat an opponent full of established, hall of fame guys. It was a David versus Goliath. Hey rookies - welcome to the majors against the Yankees in a tie game on national television in the ninth inning with the bases loaded, two outs, and a full count (No, really. That's what it was.)

Julie is right. If we had won that game, imagine the satisfaction and accomplishment those kids would have felt playing in their first game in the major leagues. Goliath won last night but I'm still glad I'm not a Philistine.

Remember Sam Fuld? Remember when the Rays only won one of the first nine games to start the season and built themselves a huge hole. Then came the spark that was Sam Fuld. That flame burned out pretty quick and was replaced by Matt Joyce who was hot for a while. Kotchman has been the most consistent spark.

Play it again, Sam. We need another spark plug. I don't care who it is but somebody step up fast before this thing gets away from us.

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