Game 115: Toronto at Tampa Bay

Today’s lineups:

Thumbnail image for BlueJays.jpgTORONTO BLUE JAYS (55-59)
Fourth place AL East, 17.0 GB

1. Marco Scutaro, SS
2. Aaron Hill, 2B
3. Adam Lind, LF
4. Kevin Millar, 1B
5. Vernon Wells, CF
6. Randy Ruiz, DH
7. Edwin Encarnacion, 3B
8. Jose Bautista, RF
9. Raul Chavez, C

Starter: LHP Brian Tallet (5-6, 4.85)

Thumbnail image for Rays.jpgTAMPA BAY RAYS (61-54)
Third place AL East, 11.5 GB

1. Jason Bartlett, SS
2. Carl Crawford, LF
3. Evan Longoria, 3B
4. Ben Zobrist, 2B
5. Carlos Pena, 1B
6. Willy Aybar, DH
7. Gabe Kapler, RF
8. Dioner Navarro, C
9. B.J. Upton, CF

Starter: LHP Scott Kazmir (6-7, 6.50)

Don’t forget, you can follow me on Twitter: @MLBastian

~JB

4 Comments

I’d like to point out some facts in defense of Ruiz, who’s gotten a couple of unfair “snarky articles” written about him regarding how many teams he’s played with and how long he’s been in the minors.

The fact is Randy has been through 9 organizations including the Blue Jays. However, what is important to note is 8 of those organizations were national league teams who don’t have space for a designated hitter. The other point is Randy was behind some pretty good first baseman in some of those organizations including Ryan Howard, Joey Votto and Jason Giambi.

The other point about Ruiz is, he has proven he can hit, hit for power and drive in runs. He can hit both left and right handed pitching, he also hits well with risp.
In addition, he’s 31, a hard core veteran who obviously knows this is likely his last chance to play in the majors. I’m not sure any of us would ride those buses for 10 years to chase the dream, I know I wouldn’t.

In other words, he’s damn motivated to make it. Right now he’s hitting .353/.353/.706. Why don’t we try him out in the 4th hole, he’s got more experience hitting in that position than anyone on this team. If he works out, we have ourselves a low cost high producing designated hitter, if he doesn’t, he doesn’t and we’ve lost nothing.
IMO, I’d rather have a highly motivated guy like this, than an over paid older DH (like Millar) who’s already made his coin and in the serious down side of his career.

gsjays:

When I saw the line-up, I thought why isn’t Ruiz hitting 4th? I’m not particularly a Millar fan, but understand that he should provide some bench strength.

Steve

Possibly Ruiz is batting behind Ver-none to get him some better pitches to hit. It is about time for Wells to get hot anyway.

Ruiz as a first baseman has certainly been handicapped by playing first base, where you are expected to be a good hitter with some pop, but what I don’t get is why he hasn’t stayed in one place for long. Surely he hit well enough to be kept around in case somebody was injured.
Of course, he will fit right in with the Jays now that they have fired the fastest man on the team, and the second fastest isn’t hitting. They need all the RBI guys they can get, because they sure can’t steal bases any more.

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