After losing Friday night to the Marlins and Anibal Sanchez, the Rays turn to David Price (2.96 FIP) to help get them back in the win column. The Rays are in a mini-skid, losing five of their last seven games, and their lead in the AL East has shrunk to only a half game over Boston. A win today would be huge, especially considering the Rays have to face Josh Johnson and his 1.64 ERA tomorrow.
The Rays' offense has struggled recently, but that should hopefully turn around today with Javier Vazquez taking the mound for the Marlins. In short, Vazquez (5.38 FIP) has been one of the worst pitchers in the majors so far this season. His velocity is down from where it was in 2009 and he looks even worse on the mound than he did last year (when he posted a 5+ ERA with the Yankees). He's walking over 5 batters per nine, striking out only 4.5 batters per nine, and averaging over one hit allowed per inning. It's like he's throwing batting practice whenever he takes the mound, so the Rays better bring their bats and be ready to rack up some runs.
Today's game is scheduled for 4:10 PM, meaning the Rays and Marlins could sneak in the game before the Rapture happens around 6-7 PM EST. Until then, enjoy this picture from Doug09 at DRaysBay. Happy Rapture Day!