Game #106 Lineup and Outlooks
Matt Andriese pitched well enough to win most nights, but it was Xavier Cedeno’s turn to help the Rays on their quest for the number one overall draft pick, yesterday. He came through with flying colors. I did like what I saw out of Erasmo Ramirez yesterday, and with Brad Boxberger the night before this bullpen is starting to get back to being a useful tool in manager Mr. Kevin Cash’s belt. Tonight’s feature will see our Jake Odorizzi take on their Edinson Volquez:
I see the Rays as a solid favorite again today, and this time Vegas is even more in agreement leaving little edge for either team. It looks like the offense will come down to Evan Longoria, Brad Miller and Corey Dickerson who comprise a pretty solid middle of the order. Odorizzi doesn’t look to have huge threats to worry about as he does so well with lefties like Hosmer, Gordon and Morales (for today). I’d be careful with Lorenzo Cain who was swinging it pretty well yesterday. I also think that Odorizzi is going to have to challenge these guys inside. I get why he has avoided it for the most part, but with so little power in their order I’d like to see Jake go after some of their guys inside. Otherwise you’ll see them gladly slap singles the other way and go first to third all day long.
The benches are pretty much the same with Desmond Jennings taking a seat for Nick Franklin. I’m really excited to see what Franklin, and Beckham as another, can do with the remaining time this year. The team absolutely needs to sort out what they’ve got with these two. Both have shown flashes of being useful players, but the Rays are chock full of guys that can play up the middle with obvious holes in their games. You can never have too many good players, but too much overlap in skillsets and you start to run out of places to put these guys.
It’s wild that the Rays are running into the same problem the Mariners had with Franklin and Miller. Both can flat out mash righties, which has a ton of value, and they’re close enough to scratch defenders at shortstop that they both would provide an incredible amount of value. In reality, they’re poor enough defenders that you end up wanting somebody else and the bat doesn’t look as shiny anywhere else. Turns out that Matt Duffy is that somebody else, though I fear that he’s going to look a lot like what we already have. Most folks’ll take the devil they don’t know, I guess.