Ladies, gentlemen, and Sanfords, welcome to the Rays Tank, where the hits just keep on coming even when the hits don't keep on coming. (Rich Hill? Really??? Ugh...) But then, some of you might not have seen it, because I heard the Grass Rays had something going on in East St. Pete, where some hotshot rookie accomplished some important firsts. Siege the day indeed.
But as chance would have it, today seems to be a big day for the Dome Rays as far as firsts go. So we're gonna depart from the usual format and take a look at a few of them, plus a few other Rays highlights, because why not? It's not like anybody reads this besides my Aunt Kathleen anyway. (Hi, Aunt Kathleen! I don't think I ever thanked you for the birthday card. So thanks. Also, happy 75th birthday to my Dad, who I'm pretty sure doesn't read this, but whatev.)
But enough self-indulgence on my part. Without further ado, I give you the firsts of September 14th:
In 2008, in the heat of the Rays first ever playoff race, David Price made his debut in relief against the Yankees.
He worked out okay for us.
In 2009, the first year the Rays disappointed you, Reid Brignac hit his first big-league dinger.
So glad we didn't trade this guy for Jason Bay. I mean, who could have possibly known that an uppercut like that wasn't going to play at the ML level?
This next one is not a first, but I came across it while I was looking through the archives and I had to share. It's from the same game as the Briggy homer, also known as the period in which Evan Longoria was going to be the next Mike Schmidt.
He's still a fine fielder, but I miss that guy.
In 2010, the major league bullpen phone rang for the first time for Jake McGee. He promptly fanned the Captain. No big deal.
93 mph? Psh.
In 2011, Matt Moore came on in relief for his ML debut and recorded his first strikeout.
Good grief, that change was ridiculous.
And just last year, Jeff Beliveau notched his first ML save.
Okay, maybe that one isn't a big day in Rays' history, but it's a big one in Beliveau history. And I always liked the guy. Get well soon, Jeff.
Other famous firsts from this day in baseball history:
1951: Browns rookie Bob Nieman becomes the first player to homer in his first two major league at bats when he takes the Red Sox Mickey McDermott yard in his first two trips to the plate. In his third time up, Nieman beats out a bunt single, surely breaking some unwritten rule.
1968: Detroit's Denny McLain notches his 30th win of the season when the Tigers rally to beat the A's. He is the first big leaguer to win 30 games since Dizzy Dean in 1934.
1986: Playing third instead of his usual catcher, Bob Brenly ties a ML record by committing four errors in one inning. Oh dear lord. But! He also hits two homers, including the walkoff winner in the Giants 7-6 victory over the Braves.
1986: Bo Jackson hits his first ML homer. The 475-foot bomb is the longest in Kaufman Stadium history.
1987: During an 18-3 blowout loss to the Jays, Ron Washington plays shortstop for the Orioles. It's the first time someone other than Cal Ripken Jr. has played the position for Baltimore in 8,243 innings (904 games).
1990: Ken Griffey Sr. & Jr. become the first father and son to homer in the same game when they go back-to-backagainst the Angels' Kirk McCaskill.
- First Florida State League championship since 1997! This is Stone Crabs Baseball.
- Good work from Eno Sarris talking to and breaking down Erasmo Ramirez and his process.
- Eric Lang with the strike zone as a 3-D shape? Yes please. This is one thing that the availability of PITCHf/x on our broadcast and elsewhere has often caused us to forget.
- The article is behind the pay wall, and there's nothing Rays in it, but RJ made a better-than-average joke for his transaction roundup headline today.