A great pitchers duel tonight. Brett Cecil gave up a run in the first inning off a double that likely wouldn't have been a double if a fan didn't reach out and grab it and a well earned double. Other than that he was great. 4 hits, 2 walks and 9 k in 7 innings to get the win. Shawn Camp pitched a perfect 8th and Kevin Gregg gave up a lead off single in the 9th, just to keep us guessing, then a strike out, fly out and ground out to get his 25th save.
Matt Garza might have pitched even better than Cecil: 8 innings, 4 hits, 0 walks and 4 k. But in the 3rd Edwin Encarnacion started the inning with a hard hit double, then Jose Molina lined out to second, second baseman Sean Rodriguez tried to double off EE but threw the ball into left instead. EE scored all the way from second on the play. Then in the 7th Jose Bautista got on on a Garza throwing error, moved to second on Adam Lind's single then scored on Lyle Overbay's double over Gabe Kapler in LF. Kapler made a great throw from deep left to get Lind at the plate. A perfect one hop throw. The way Garza was pitching you had to take the chance of trying to score Lind.
Those two errors cost the Rays the game. Good thing because Cecil deserved the win and didn't deserve the run scored against him. Fans should know better than to reach into the field to get a ball in play, especially when Jose Bautista was going to get the ball. We missed a chance at either seeing his arm or the batter staying at first on the play.
Jays of the Day are Cecil (.339 WPA, pretty Docastic to me), Gregg (.167), Camp (.123) and Overbay (.100). Honorable mention to Edwin for hustling home on the error and Lind for getting hits to set up both runs. Hills (-.119) and Wells (-.100) had Suckage numbers.
We only managed 4 hits on the day: Lind's two and EE and Overbay's doubles, but with the errors it was enough. Pat told us, before the game, that the reason the Rays were winning was because of their defense. To be fair he had about 20 other 'reasons the Rays were winning' as the game went on.
Good start to the series with the Rays. J.P. Arencibia will be behind the plate. Brad Mills will be throwing to him. James Shields will be getting whiplash from watching his pitches rocket off JPA's bat. No pressure. Afternoon game tomorrow, 1:00 Eastern.