Over the weekend, the Rays played two extra-innings games. They lost the first one, although Maddon seems to think (with an "adequate amount of hope") the game will be replayed from the fourth inning following a protest about when replay can be used. I would say that Maddon is off his rocker, except that I don't know how much hope he needs to consider it "adequate." Knowing Maddon, I think this might mean "almost no hope whatsoever." Either way, Jason Collette has full coverage of the rule and a gif of the event.
The Rays won the second game in the tenth off an Evan Lognoria single.
The other news from the weekend is that The Athletics, who need a shortstop now that Jed Lowrie has a fractured finger, have placed a claim for Yunel Escobar. Marc Topkin thinks that a deal is unlikely and that Escobar will be pulled back off waivers, but his belief doesn't appear to be based on any inside information, so take it for what it's worth. The Athletics have already acquired Geovany Soto to help their battered catching corps.
Danny broke down what the Rays have on the middle infield behind Escobar, and that article brought out a surprising amount of Escobar hate. Huh. More on that later, I suppose.
MGL looks at batting order optimization this year (Rays not listed).
Theodore L. Turocy looks at the affect base stealing has on the batter/pitcher matchup (h/t Tango). Very mathy, but the rough conclusion: having a base-stealing threat on base does help the batter a bit.
Billy Bean (not Billy Beane) is MLB's "Inclusion Ambassador." Alex Remington looks at what that means, with regards to the LGBT community and baseball.
No Rays in the David Laurila Monday roundup, but check out the last section with the Astros' hitting coach, Brett Strom:
We’ve been sold a bill of goods that down is always where to go. There are certain guys you want to pitch up.