Oh, no — oh, yes!

Guess I should say a few words about Matt Garza’s no-hitter last night, which I watched in its entirety on ESPN. Hopefully there won’t be any claims that the no-hitter wasn’t all that impressive because it came against the beset-by-injury Tigers. The play that really “saved” it was a running catch by right fielder Ben Zobrist in the third inning. On our trip, we saw him make a similar catch, when he was playing center

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field on July 2nd — Levi put “8!” on his scoresheet, so you can tell it was good. To our Mets-fan hangers-on, who have been waiting for a no-hitter since before they were born: sorry. But, hey, there are still two months left in this Year of the Pitcher.

What a difference 6 years makes

Some differences between May 2010 and May 2004:

  • The Boston Red Sox have won the World Series twice.
  • The Tampa Bay Devil Rays are now just the Tampa Bay Rays, and have won the American League pennant.
  • Kaufmann Stadium, home of the Kansas City Royals, has been renovated.
  • The Minnesota Twins play in an outdoor stadium.
  • I have a job where Excel is installed on my computer, which means I don’t have to use graph paper. I can make actual spreadsheets, such as this one.
  • Through various travel-related machinations, I hold Premier Executive elite status with United Airlines, Executive status with National Car Rental, and Platinum status with Hyatt.
  • There are no Hyatt hotels in the state of Iowa. (Actually, this may have been true in 2004 as well.)
  • I like baseball even more.
  • Levi is at least twice as busy.

Does this list of differences have anything to do with anything? Mmmmmmaybe…

Evan Longoria is quite a good hitter

Not much to say about last night’s Angels-Rays game, which I attended with hanger-on Jason.

Actually, I do have one tale to recount: in the third inning, the boy sitting next to us, who was maybe 3 or 4 years old, started telling his father he wanted to leave. Dad tried to bargain with him, saying that if they went home, he’d have to go to bed.

“Play and then go to bed?”

“No, straight to bed.”

The boy thought this over for a while, and then decided he did want to go to bed, and then get up the next morning and go to church. “That’s not until Sunday,” pointed out Dad.

There was some more hushed negotiation, to which I wasn’t paying close attention because the Rays were in the process of scoring two runs, and then they actually did end up leaving. Oh, well, it saved the kid from learning the sad truth, that the Angels sometimes do lose to the Joe Maddon-led Rays at home.

I’ll see this afternoon if that happens again. I’m leaving work early to go to the game, which has a somewhat-unusual 4:05 P.M. start time. That would be perfectly suited for a national Wednesday Night Baseball broadcast at 7:00 Eastern, but — I’m sure everyone is going to be surprised by this — ESPN is showing the Yankees vs. whatever patsy has been ordered by Bud Selig to take a dive. I believe it will be a team of 8-year-old Chinese gymnasts dressed as the Detroit Tigers.

One would expect the Cardinals, Orioles, or Blue Jays to tweet, but…

Joe Maddon is apparently the only MLB manager on Twitter, as @RaysJoeMaddon. His tweets can be a bit obtuse and incoherent…kind of like the Rays’ offensive strategies. Ha ha!

And here’s a sentence I never, ever thought I’d use: I learned about this from Alyssa Milano.

The right opportunity at the right time

Via Sports by Brooks: the St. Petersburg Times reports that the Rays are looking for a new person to portray Pansy the

Wuss-Wuss Fish, or as they call him, Raymond. Here’s the actual job posting.

That Times report mentions that the previous Pansy was fired last month; no word on any official cause.

We hold these truths to be self-evident

When Jim and I started this blog more than four years ago, we shared a couple of fundamental principles. To wit:

1 The Devil Rays suck and will forever suck.

2 Bud Selig is evil, or at least incompetent.

Good to know at least one of those truths still shines.

Congratulations, Rays, on your first pennant of many. Congratulations, Phillies, on your World Championship, and congratulations to longtime Baseball Related Program Activities favorites Matt Stairs, Geoff Jenkins, Jamie Moyer, and So Taguchi. I’m glad Ryan Howard buck-bucking onto the dogpile didn’t kill Brad Lidge.

Rays awesomeness watch, The Onion edition

Double-Booked Tropicana Field Holds First Haunted House World Series

“[D]ates for the haunted house were reserved in late July, a time when the possibility of the stadium being used for the World Series did not seem realistic to anyone in the Rays’ front office.”

Rays awesomeness watch rolls on

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Rays awesomeness watch, Comedy Central edition

Locations scrolling across the globe

on the “Daily Show with Jon Stewart” set this week: New York (as usual), Cooperstown, Williamsport, Tampa Bay.