Tampa Bay squared off against the Oakland A’s in the first of a two game series with the Athletics. This will be the only appearance Oakland makes at the Trop this season.
Wade Davis improved his record to 2-1, getting the win after pitching 5 innings. Davis looked good except for the top of the third. After the Rays scored 4 in the bottom of the second, the A’s rallied for 4 of their own in the top of the third, based largely on the hitting strength of the bottom of their order last night. The A’s 9 hole batter, 2B Adam Rosales was 4 for 4 and raised his batting average to .313. Athletics’s leadoff man SS Cliff Pennington was a triple shy of hitting for the cycles last night after going 4 for 5 with 4 RBI’s.
Rays C John Jaso continues to impress. With Rays catch Dioner Navarro serving the first of a two game suspension, backup catch John Jaso continued his torrid hit streak, going 3 for 4 with a double.He is doing all he can to stay with this squad and he continues to play at this level, he might challenge Navy for the starting catchers position.
DH Pat Burrell entered Tuesday night’s game with a lifetime BA of .400 against A’s starting pitcher Ben Sheets (who, by the way could use some new pants that fit) and knocked a 3 run homerun continuing to raise his batting average. You know that Burrell has to feel the pressure this year with Hank Blalock in Durham currently hitting .396 after 53 AB’s.
The best start in Rays history continues to roll on. The Rays now have the best start in the AL East since the Yankees started the 2003 season 17-3. Tonight’s matchup will see Rays SP James Shields (2-0 3.96 ERA) square up against A’s P Dallas Braden (3-0 2.77 ERA)
Don’t forget to visit MLB.com and fill out your all-star ballot. We’ve got to load the AL roster with the Rays players.