The Rays Tank: 31-47

Brian Blanco

Per Marc Topkin, Joe Maddon wanted the Rays to achieve at least a 50-50 season. To do that, they'd have to go 19-3 the rest of the way.

The seemingly only way to make that potentially feasible (sans offensive-driven bats being cast down from the heavens) is if their starters can go last at least six innings each game the rest of the way, as they are 23-15 this season when that occurs, and with last night's 8-1 loss to the Pirates, 8-32 when that does not.

All things considered, that's pretty unlikely, and looks it may be time to embrace the worst in MLB title for 2014, a nod the Rays have now held for a solid 20 straight days.

***

Since the injuries are just adding to the fun this season, Jerry Sands headed to the DL yesterday with a strained tendon in his left wrist, and Cole Figueroa was called up from Durham as his replacement. Can we just call it a wash yet?

***

In things that aren't losses or injuries, this 17-year-old badass knuckleballer is badass:

Chelsea Baker threw BP to the Rays yesterday, whiffing Evan Longoria, David Price and Jose Molina, but not before plunking Longo in the right shoulder on one pitch.

She learned her knuckleball from Joe Niekro, and has used it to throw two perfect games in her little league career. Baker is currently in high school at Durant in Plant City, and per the stats on her MaxPreps profile, had an ERA of 0.74 with 3 wins over 19 innings pitched with 9 strikeouts this past season.

Too. Cool.

Links:

- Tommy Rancel looked at Longo's numbers as of late over at The Process Report, noting that he finally seems to be "back in the swing of things."

- Tim Kurkjian participated in the Sausage Race at Miller Park in the role of No. 4 Hot Dog, and didn't fare so well.

- Pastor Dean Esskew leads the Calling for Christ ministry and enjoys 48-ounce steaks. Why does this matter? The Calling for Christy ministers solely to umpires. Pretty cool read from ESPN The Magazine.

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