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The Rays Tank: First Place Day

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Good things happen when the Rays play the Yankees and the Red Sox play the Orioles.

Loney flashed some power last night.
Loney flashed some power last night.
Jim McIsaac

Good things seem to happen when the Rays are trying to catch the Red Sox, the Rays are playing the New York, and Boston is playing Baltimore. This time was less dramatic than that other time, but you can still read about it here.

It wasn't enough last night, but the Yankees reacquired Alfonso Soriano for minor league pitcher Corey Black and cash. Here's a description of Black, the Yankees fourth round pick last year.

They may not be winning this season, but there is one category where the Blue Jays certainly have the Rays beat. They have more beer cans with their logo on them. We need to get on this, fast.

I think that one of the current frontiers in sabermetrics is better understanding of pitch sequencing. Joehn Roegele takes a look at strikeout pitch sequencing at Beyond the Box Score.

Maybe hitting your spot shouldn't matter. Maybe a strike should be a strike, and a ball should be a ball. Clearly, it does matter, though. Jeff Sullivan has pulled together a series of instances where a pitch right down the middle was called a ball because the catcher had to move his glove.

There are strong divisions and there are weak divisions. The AL East has been historically strong recently, but it's not the only one. The AL West has been tough, too.