Game #79 Lineups and Outlook
Yesterday was incredible. The Rays played like a winner until it mattered so that they could come away with the loss. That first overall draft pick should be theirs in no time. I’ve said many times that this feels like 2007 where a very good offense is left to die on the vine because the bullpen and atrocious defense flat out refuse to get guys out. I’m cool with that if it means we’re staring at a similar 2008-type season next year, but for now it should be fun to actually evaluate who has what it takes and who needs to have their tether cut.
For instance, at the moment Corey Dickerson and Oswaldo Arcia appear to be pretty redundant. Neither should play defense, but both should be able to hit. Righties, at least. The Rays would be wise to use the next month(s) to ascertain which of these two should be prioritized going forward. Maybe neither, but let’s at least see what these guys can do with a meaningful sample. I’m in a similar boat with Drew Smyly. I have no expectations for his starts anymore, but if he can start to piece it back together maybe he becomes a guy you can look to build around going forward. Matt Moore is a good example of that as he seems to have come out of that nasty funk he had earlier in the year.
Anyways, the gamblers see these teams as perfectly even today, but the system likes the Tigers by a healthy margin. I’d look to move your ducats there, if that’s your bag. Their offense is scary with Aviles the lone truly weak spot, and Michael Fulmer can really bring it on the mound. This looks like a rough game for our Rays.
The bullpen report for today could probably just have the word “GARBAGE” in each of those cells, but maybe you’re less of a reactionary than I. It’s ugly either way, though the Rays struggled with some of the lesser lights last night when it looked like they were going to run away with it.