This one lived up to the billing. Price pitched beautifully and Roy Halladay pitched well, but not well enough to keep the Rays off the board. Check out the lines:
Price - 6 IP, 25 TBF, 7 K, 1 BB, 6 GB, 4 FB, 103 P, 63% strikes
Halladay - 6 IP, 27 TBF, 7 K, 0 BB, 4 GB, 6 FB, 102 P, 73% strikes
Following the worst outing of his life, Price comes back and goes toe-to-toe with one of the best pitchers of the generation. Sure, he got a generous strike zone at some points today, and he took full advantage of it. Having seen Price squeezed at the bottom of the zone before, it's hard to be up in arms when a few breaks go his way.
We've talked about the struggles the Rays pitchers have had in missing the Jays bats. Today, Price generated 11 whiffs. He threw mostly fastballs and sliders, but a handful of change-ups were mixed in. Nobody swung and missed at a change - four of the pitches were called balls - but he did get Vernon Wells to groundout on the pitch in the fourth inning.
Some days Price won't need anything but his main two pitches, today was one of those days. The importance of having a good change (or spike curve, I guess) is for those 90% of days when Price's fastball command is off or he doesn't feel comfortable with his slider. Give Price credit for his willingness to adapt, even if it stems from necessity.
Don't glorify this start too much due to its singularity, but appreciate what we saw today and rejoice in the fact that we should get more than a few of these over the years.