Rookie right hander Alex Cobb takes the bump for the Tampa Bay Rays tonight in his fourth start since being recalled from AAA Durham. Over that span, Cobb has a 1.86 ERA and .214 opponents' average against. He, Joe Maddon, and Rays fans everywhere will hope that the offense has continued eating their Wheaties. Over their last 3 games, the offense has put up run totals of 9, 8, and 7 and they have averaged 5.14 runs per game over their last 14 games. In the 97 games before Desmond Jennings started leading off and wOBAing .479, the Rays averaged nearly a run less per game, a meager 4.21.
The Athletics starter, northpaw Brandon McCarthy, is also having a very good season. Tonight will be his 16th start, and he is coming off of a career-high 9 strikeout game against the Twins. He sports a 4-5 record, but a 3.58 ERA and a lower BB/9 than all but two American League pitchers with at least 100 IP. The Rays will need to swing the bat and make contact to get to him tonight.
Gametime is 7:10 at always air-conditioned Tropicana Field.