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Tampa Bay Rays News and Links: Loving playoff baseball

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Division Series - New York Yankees v Tampa Bay Rays - Game Two Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Division series update

American League

Tampa Bay Rays and and New York Yankees are tied at one game each. Their next game is tonight at 7pm. The Rays face Masahiro Tanaka, who for years has been kryptonite for Rays hitters. They did, however, knock him around this year in his August 18 appearance (six runs in four innings) so whatever they did that game, let’s hope they do it again.

Houston Astros up 2 games to 0 against the Oakland Athletics. Is there any non-Houston baseball fan who is not pulling hard for Oakland today? They play today at 3:30 pm.

National League

Atlanta Braves up 1 game to 0 against the Miami Marlins. They play today at 2pm. I’m very glad Mike Zunino hit a dinger last night because otherwise my Travis d’Arnaud envy would have been overwhelming.

Los Angeles Dodgers up 1 game to 0 against San Diego Padres. (Padres were forced into an unplanned bullpen day last night when starter Mike Clevenger left after one inning saying it felt like his bones were banging into his elbow). They’ll be back at it tonight at 9pm.

Rays News

I know the Rays won yesterday, so why do I feel like I’ve been through an emotional ringer? Maybe in part because the national media can’t stop talking about Giancarlo Stanton’s impressive second home run. ($) Yeah, it was a good one! But this was a playoff game, and the other team actually won.

Eno Sarris writes insightfully about Tyler Glasnow. When he’s dominant I wonder how anyone ever hits him at all ($).

Ben Clemens’ look at Randy Arozarena (aka the Rays whole damned offense) seemed prescient on Monday night. Clemens might have all the data, but Juan Toribio actually knows the secret to Randy’s hot hand: cowboy boots. And if that’s not enough Randy-mania for you, here’s John Romano’s take. ($)

Mike Zunino gets a shout out in this look at the college careers of some of those playing in the postseason ($) timed well for his big Game 2 home run. Let’s give him credit as well for blocking those Snell and Glasnow curves.

I could listen to Tyler Glasnow talk about pitching all day.

I wasn’t sure whether to link to this article because I hate sending clicks to pieces that haven’t earned them. The TL;DR version: the author notes that the Yankees have a much higher payroll than the Rays, and argues that neutral fans should therefore jump on the Yankee bandwagon because that is the...wait for it...ethical choice. The author does not consider payroll as a percentage of revenue or team value. The author does not take note of the Yankees maneuvering to stay under the luxury tax threshold. Nope, higher payroll means they are taking the high road, full stop.

But I found this good response by Michael Bradburn, so I decided to share both pieces.

Around baseball

Here’s a meaty deep dive into the Atlanta Braves rotation from 538.

MLB still plans to sell limited tickets for the NLCS and World Series in Arlington, TX. The plan is to sell “pods” of four tickets with the idea that you would sit with family members or friends in your “bubble” and then there would be distance between each pod. This article doesn’t say how much distance (are we talking, like, one 4-person pod per section? per row?) Bathrooms and concessions would still be open. Let’s just say that the health experts quoted in this article are skeptical that this is a good idea. ($)