Jeremy Hellickson's debut against the Minnesota Twins met and exceeded all but the wildest expecations. Matched against a hungry, talented team on a hot streak (the Minnesota Twins) led by their best pitcher (Carl Pavano), "Hellboy" was not exactly handed a cupcake for his major league debut. In response, he delivered seven innings, giving up only three hits and two runs while striking out six and walking two. When all was said and done, he had his first major league win, the Rays were tied for first in the AL East and just like that, he was gone, sent back to the AAA Durham Bulls (and replaced on the big league roster by 2008 ALCS hero Dan Johnson).â†µ
Not to get too far ahead of ourselves, but the potential of the Rays pitching staff in the very near future is mind boggling. Jeremy Hellickson should spend the next few days of that future saying good bye to friends he's made during his time in Durham, because the next time he comes to Tampa Bay, he's not going back.