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Rays Defeat Orioles Again Behind Pat Burrell, B.J. Upton, and Ben Zobrist Home Runs

Quick recap because I'm working on something rather large in scale for the A.M.

  • Last night marked the first time Pat Burrell and B.J. Upton homered in the same game. Tonight they did it again. I really figured I would be writing this sentence sometime in May, not August, but better late than never.
  • So I was wrong about Ben Zobrist hitting 20+ home runs in the majors. He now has 51 in his last ~650 plate appearances in the majors. In 1,642 minor league plate appearances he had 23. Go figure, right?
  • Solid defensive play by Jason Bartlett tonight. I feel bad for Matt Wieters - the runner on third - in that situation. Whether he takes off immediately or stayed near the base, you had to feel like he was going to turn in an out on the basepaths. He made it up for either way by reaching base twice more, but nobody could bring him around.
  • Speaking of catchers. Kevin Kennedy likes catcher's ERA. There are about 25 things wrong with using that as a meaningful metric and yet I'm not at all shocked that he values it. Of course he does. How would a former catcher realize he only has so much value of whether an earned run is scored while he was catching or not?
  • Following up on that thought, catchers ERA says that Dioner Navarro is a better defensive catcher than Michel Hernandez, Gregg Zaun, and Joe Mauer. I'm not one to appeal to the majority often, but with the exception of throwing runners out, I can't think of a thing Navarro does better than Zaun and anything he does better than Mauer - defensively or otherwise.
  • Fun fact, if rather meaningless. Jeff Niemann now has 13 wins, that ties him for third all-time for a Rice graduate with David Aardsma. He's two behind Matt Anderson, and fewer than 40 from Norm Charlton. Yes, three relievers are the most winning professional pitchers from Rice.