How good have Scott Kazmir, James Shields, and Edwin Jackson been over the past month? Good enough to combine for 102.2 innings and 24 earned runs; a 2.1 ERA, with Jackson boasting the lowest of the group at 1.36.
Jason Hammel has been nearly identical to last season's totals:
2006 9 starts 44 IP 61 H 38 ER 21 BB 32 SO 7 HR
2007 7 starts 46 IP 58 H 38 ER 30 BB 34 SO 7 HR
Hammel will need to show something down the stretch or otherwise risk being a casualty of the vaunted "Out of options," label. That could lead to Hammel being dealt along with fellow fringe OOOers like Jon Switzer, Tim Corcoran, and Shawn Camp; with the latter two being possible release candidates.
Rays team ERA by months:
Needless to say, the infusion of bullpen help, as well as the resurgence of Kazmir and Shields, along with Jackson has turned the team around; and the nearly 6.7 bullpen ERA has shrunk to 6.25 in the four weeks since it was retooled.