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Hendo Meets With Team; Discusses Slump

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From Marc Lancaster

We were still standing outside the clubhouse more than 10 minutes after the game when we were surprised to see every Rays position player come up from the tunnel that leads to the dugout, each player still in full uniform. We thought they might have been brawling and we didn't know about it, but it turns out hitting coach Steve Henderson called a meeting to address the team's abysmal offensive output lately (.198 in the last 13 games if you're scoring at home).

"It was just basically the As, Bs and Cs of winning ballgames that we're not doing - getting guys over, getting guys in," said Gomes. "I think it was what we needed to hear from our hitting coach, and he has our back the whole way. He just wants us all to succeed. He wanted us to sit down and get back on track."

Harris said it was a constructive session.

"It was just, look, this has gone on too long and we've got to start putting this together," he said. "Start figuring it out, concentrating a little bit more."

How bad has it been recently? A morbid .680 team OPS in August along with an 82 OPS+, the previous lows? .743 and 99 in May. Certainly unacceptable for any ball club, but for a team with offensive talent like B.J. Upton, Carl Crawford, Carlos Pena, and Delmon Young it's downright ridiculous. Speaking of Upton he has a .213 batting average this month and a .679 OPS; ouch.