The Rays Tank: Pinellas To Talk To Rays; PITCHF/x Research; Ekstrom Gets Warned

August 7, 2012; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria (3) at bat in the second inning against the Toronto Blue Jays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

Goodness, I can't get enough of that image. He's back!

Evan Longoria made his return last night, but that wasn't the only good news for the Rays yesterday. After the Hillsborough county approached the Rays recently about having a discussion concerning their future, Pinellas county returned suit by voting to ask the Rays to have a discussion about their future.

I suppose you could look at this vote two ways: the cynical way, or the upbeat way. The cynical side says that Pinellas is just returning volley and wants to make sure Tampa isn't upstaging them, but I see this as yet another small, positive step towards some final regional solution. These negotiations and discussion could take a while, and Pinellas needs to position themselves so that they can get the most compensation possible for when the Rays end up moving. But at the end of the day, the move across the bay is nigh inevitable; the only question is how long it will take both sides to talk and negotiate.

  • Dan Brooks and Harry Pavlidis have started a PITCHF/x Mailbag, and in their first column they discuss how often hitters swing at 3-0 pitches. Trust me, the question is a lot more interesting than it sounds at first.
  • Adam Sobsey has his latest column over at BPro, getting inside the mind of one Mike Ekstrom. Apparently Ekstrom took nearly a full minute between pitches during a recent game, and he actually got fined by MLB for it.
  • If you've been enjoying the Olympics, be sure to check out the site Sports on Earth. It's Joe Posnanski, Will Leitch, and a handful of other excellent writers covering the Olympics. Their articles have been fantastic so far.

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