After much hue and cry from the commentariat, we're rebooting the Rays Tank, but with a twist. You'll still get your links down below (probably), and you'll still have a (mostly) open thread to talk about all things Rays. But we're also going to try to give you a little baseball history lesson every day. Mostly because I can write five of these on the weekend without worrying about what's actually going on with the team. You're welcome?
Without further ado, I give you: August 10th:
Our first stop in the wayback machine lands us with a memorable Rays moment when, two years ago in Los Angeles, Evan Longoria and Yunel Escobar combined to embarrass Juan Uribe.
This is always more exciting in the movies. Weirdly, Mike Lowell also pulled off the hidden ball trick on this date in 2005. So if you find yourself on third base at some point today, be on the lookout I guess?
For our next stop, we go to 2003, right in the heart of the steroid era, where all the best glove work is found. No, really! Watch young Rafael Furcal of the Braves do something only eleven players before him had pulled off, and just three more since.
Usually there's a huge amount of luck in executing an unassisted triple play, and there is some of that here. But mostly, this is a sensational play that the baseball gods decided to smile upon.
For our third stop, we look at a classic ex-Ray moment. Watch Jose Canseco hit his first post-DRay bomb.
Last video stop is way, way back to when pre-permabanned Pete Rose broke Stan Musial's National League hits record on the day play resumed after the '81 baseball strike.
60,000 fans. In the Vet. Let that sink in.
Here's some other stuff that happened on August 10th:
- 1998: Harry and Hunter Wendelstedt become the first father/son pair to umpire a major league game.
- 1994: Les Expos win for the 20th time in 22 games, beating the Pirates at Three Rivers and pushing their record to go 35 games over .500. Sadly, this would be the last game before Baseball Strike The Greater, which ended competitive major league baseball in Montreal for all intents and purposes. At least until $tu gets his way.
- 1971: Harmon Killebrew of the Minnesota Twins becomes the tenth member of the 500 homer club. He hits No 501 later in the same game.
- Also 1971: Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) is founded in Cooperstown. Sabermetics is born!
- 1944: The Braves' Red Barrett defines "pitching to contact," throwing only 58 pitches in a nine inning, 2-0 shutout of the Reds. The game takes an hour and fifteen minutes.
And what's going on with your Rays right now? As promised, here's your Link Dump:
- ICYMI, Matt Moore was pretty good over the weekend in his first start with Durham. Meanwhile, Jose "Why Isn't Matt Throwing 97 Right After Surgery" Fernandez is headed for the DL.
- The Red Sox have traded Mike Napoli to the Texas Rangers for a bag of beans. It's a PTBNL or cash, but they're eating much of his salary, so really this is a dump. This move will help the Rangers slightly in their wildcard race, but that's fine. Really the thing here is to be happy to see Boston get nothing for what was once a pretty good baseball player.
- The Statcast data isn't any good right now? Henry Druschel of Beyond the Box Score explains.
- Shane Tourtellotte from The Hardball Times on catcher framing. Does height matter? Does age matter? Read it (or just click it if you're the tl;dr type), but spoiler: the only big pattern is that rookies are bad at framing, but they get better quickly.
- The Seattle pitching coach uses Trackman data, he told David Laurila. The way he uses it sounds pretty similar to what Hickey has previously described doing: look for changes in pitch behavior, and then figure out what caused it.
- Eno Sarris on adrenaline (with PITCHf/x).