Not Time to Celebrate Rays 71st Win

August 11, 2008 at 7:45 am 2 comments

(AP Photo/Kevin P. Casey)

The Rays won their 71st game yesterday which is the most ever in their franchise’s brief history. It is only the beginning of August so the previous record of 70 will be shattered when it’s all said and done. The Rays also added Rocco Baldelli to the roster and he got his first major league hit since May of 2007. The sad part about all this is the Rays lost Carl Crawford to the DL and maybe for the season.

71 wins isn’t something that is usually and I would venture to say that is still shouldn’t be until the end of the season.

It’s one more win. One win closer to a playoff spot. One win closer to the ultimate prize. This one win had some things to be excited about other than it setting the franchise record for wins in a season. It featured the return of Rocco Baldelli. Baldelli contributed by going 1-4 with an RBI single early in the game and he played RF. He looked healthy, he showed a new found patience at the plate as well.

Thee is also something to mourn in this victory (actually the victory the night before). Carl Crawford was placed on the 15-day DL with an injury to his right hand that he said “popped”.

The injury leaves the Rays with a huge void. Crawford may not have been having his best season but he is a plus-plus leftfielder and runner and his bat was coming around too. He is key to this team, one that is virtually irreplacable.

The Rays could play Erik Hinkse in LF but they lose the defense, speed, and batting average but add power and patience. Rocco Baldelli isn’t a leftfielder and can’t play the outfield on back to back days. Cliff Floyd really isn’t much of an option either. Gabe Gross is the best defensive option but his bat isn’t close to any of the above metnioned.

Rumor has it that Mariners’ leftfielder Raul Ibanez was sent through waivers but I would think the Red Sox would place a claim on him before letting the Rays get him. So what do the Rays do? They could call up Jonny Gomes or Justin Ruggiano and see what they do with more regular playing time. But then who is the odd man out? I would say Willy Aybar but he’s out of options. Ben Zobrist has options but may be the best option outside of Erik Hinkse to play LF and I would rather see Zobrist on the roster and DFA Aybar.

The Rays may have set a personal best with their 71st win but 71 wins won’t get you anything in this league. They have more problems to worry about right now and they should focus on those problems and celebrate the small victories later.

-Jonathan C. Mitchell

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Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Erik  |  August 11, 2008 at 1:13 pm

    I think I mentioned this in your other rays blog about Bradford…

  • 2. Jonathan C. Mitchell  |  August 11, 2008 at 1:16 pm

    You did mention they were going for win #71.


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