Thursday, February 3, 2011

Carlos who? Carl wha? OMG!

Manny Ramirez & Johnny Damon are excited about joining -- and leading -- the young Rays team.  Well I should hope so! With Joe Maddon & his plaid blazers and team Mohawks, I can just see the guys getting batting helmets with dreds pre-attached. Nah, they wouldn't... would they?

I was really enjoying looking at the new incarnation of the Rays depth chart -- holy cow! What a great starting rotation, great guys on the field, nice bullpen, awesome DH options, and they're already making Damon the lead-off hitter like I suggested. (Andrew, we could use a closer!!)

If you look closely, you'll see that Boston has a pretty good team with a pretty good pitching staff. They'll be the guys to beat this year. Yankees have a great fielding team and a potentially great bullpen, with incredible closers. It's the starting pitchers we're concerned with. Blue Jays had that incredible spoiler run last year with all the HRs, but they are not mega-threats. Now the Orioles have peeled off a wad of bills this year and bought some really good players to go with their young phenoms; if they all get together and act like a team, they could do some damage in the A.L. East. I'm picking Sox and Rays, but with injuries, it could easily go Rays and Sox.

Cash-man was talking in the Times today about Yanks being the Wild Card team behind the Sox, but that is not going to happen. He tactfully did not mention the Rays because he knows his team is going to have to climb over them again and again this season and he plain loses his appetite when he sees David Price as the Rays  #1 ace.  This is going to be one interesting season. I noticed that Carlos is lost over there in Cubsville, Garza yeah, but not much else, and playing for the losingest team. Too bad....


Professor Twain said...

Thanks for the link to this depth chart, awesome! But I don't see anything showing the Rays naming Damon the lead-off hitter, where did you find that? I agree that the Rays are going to be really good this year and that the Yanks are going to struggle with their starting pitching. Red Sox will be tough.

RkC said...

Thanks for visiting Prof. Twain!

The link right under the post's title goes to Bill Chastain's article at the Rays site on After the photos, in a paragraph beginning "Damon, 47...", Chastain says Damon likely will become the Rays' lead-off hitter. In addition, whoever narrates the video today (2/7/11) at the Rays site actually states Damon will bat first & play left field. I hadn't known the decision had been made, but I think it's great. Damon's old knees & feet will probably platoon with Jennings & maybe Joyce in left. Damon's arm has been crummy for a few years, but the Trop just ain't Yankee Stadium and it might work for him.

The Yankees very often don't start hunkering down till after the All-Star break; that's probably when they'll buy a great starter. If only it's not too late. I like Maddon's approach -- to come out swinging & winning from Day 1, to get a bit of cushioning for those lean June & August days when they can't get a hit & just lose stupidly.

Sox will be tough. They may be over-confident with Carl & Adrian, etc. & then get complacent & mess up their fundamentals. Scutaro at short will be a real help for them, I think.