Tuesday, August 31, 2010

He's Outa There!

Game 136: Durham Bulls 4; Charlotte Knights 8
Season: 84-52; Home Games Remaining: 7
Wrap, Box, Herald-Sun, Triangle Offense

Since I am temporarily on the disabled list I had to suffer through the game in front of the TV at home, so if I missed any particular nuance, please let me know. You can be reasonably sure that I didn’t get it from the broadcast (more later).

Charlotte essentially gave the Bulls three runs in the 2nd to go with Justin Ruggiano’s home run in the 1st.The Bulls were cruising along very nicely until Charlotte got three of the runs back in the 5th as Ramon Ortiz began to look really shaky giving up a walk, two singles, a double and a sac fly.

In the 6th things really came unraveled. Charlotte third baseman Dayan Viciedo (it’s Viciedo, not Vicideo, Rich) got a single to center field. Ortiz worked catcher Tyler Flowers to a 3-2 count and then ...

Ortiz got thrown out of the game!

I’ve never seen that before — a pitcher getting tossed, apparently for arguing balls and strikes. Throwing at a batter, sure, but for arguing with the ump? Must’ve said something really ugly.

Brian Shouse came in and for a brief moment things looked OK, since Flowers grounded into a double play. But Shouse did not make it through the inning either. Two walks, a single, a double, and three runs later Shouse is out of there and the Bulls are behind 6 to 4. Joe Bateman came in for the last out, but the damage was done.

The Bulls could put nothing together after that. In fact, Charlotte got two more runs. So on to my rants for the day.

Rant #1: Brian Shouse has made seven appearances (9 innings) in a Bulls uniform. Results? Two blown saves (and losses) and an ERA of 9.00. I know we’re short on pitchers, but surely there’s someone downstream in the Rays system who is worthy of spending some time with the Bulls.

Rant #2: Rich Herrera (sp?) on the radio/TV. This comes in the form of advice. I doubt that he will be reading this blog, but maybe.

The job of a play by play guy is to paint a picture of the game. When a player comes to bat I want to know how he’s doing on the season, what he did in his last at bat, what he looks like, which side of the plate he bats from, etc. When/if he gets on base I want to be reminded that he’s there and which base he’s on. When the pitchers get changed I’d like to know that it happened and maybe use your expertise regarding why (why did Bateman just face one batter? Downs had pitched to two batters before you mentioned he was even in the game). My fellow Arkansas alum Scott Pose kept trying to help, but to no avail. So here’s my big tip:

Remind yourself every 30 seconds — It’s radio. They can’t see. It’s my job to help them see the game. What can I tell them now?

Odds and Ends
  • More background on Nevin Ashley from DRaysBay
  • Nice piece on Dan Johnson at The Process Report
  • Steve Wiseman at The Herald-Sun quotes Fernando Perez on potential for callups and effect on the game.
“I think we’re doing a pretty good job playing hard,” Bulls right fielder Fernando Perez said, “considering that all these games don’t really matter and our team is probably going to look drastically different in a couple of days.”
  • Adam Sobsey at Triangle Offense quotes Charlie Montoyo on the same topic.
Montoyo was asked whether he thought that [callup possibility] was on some players’ minds, distracting them from the Bulls’ business at hand: They’ve lost five of their last six games. Montoyo, normally even-keeled and calm-voiced, replied, “Of course! If I was one of them, I’d be thinking the same thing: Is it gonna be me?”


  1. This is a great and telling quote from Charlie Montoyo. He more than anybody should know what's really going on in his player's heads. I wouldn't want his job for anything, but he's really good at it.

    I love the rants...

  2. Herrera is apparently good at brow-beating children into rooting for the Rays, but yeah, again he's a really horrid PBP guy. In addition to what you pointed out, I can't tell you how many times Charlotte had runners on 1st and 2nd and he'd say "Anderson not holding the runner on".

    Gee you think? How often do you see the first baseman overly concerned about a runner forced behind the lead runner? Argh...

    Anyway, you didn't miss much at the game itself. We really caught a break on the Perez bunt. Anderson had run too far back to third and I think the Knights could have doubled up him and JJ who wasn't yet at 3rd with a good throw. I realize it worked out for us, but Anderson has to break back to the plate at some point there.

    As a side note...I tried to pick up my Monday trivia tickets yesterday, and the Bulls tickets people looked at me like I was insane. This is twice in two years now that they've goofed with trivia tickets. Can someone over there get their act together? The last time it happened, I emailed Neil and it was sorted out (yay!) but I figure emailing Rich won't help :)

    BTW, I still love Scott Pose.