Former Rays coach Lou Piniella joined Booger and Rich to talk about the managerial decisions by Joe Maddon and John Farrell during the ALDS, especially the decision to start Jeremy Hellickson in Game 4.
Piniella said that as a manager in the playoffs, you don’t want to be beat by the other team’s stars. You want to make the other guys beat you.
The Rays could’ve pitched Matt Moore on 3 days rest but opted for Jeremy Hellickson. Piniella says that Kershaw did it with the Dodgers and the Rays could’ve gone with Moore but Hellickson isn’t an awful option to have. Piniella says it’s a gamble to start Hellickson but Maddon knows his team and knows his personel and Piniella trusts his judgment.
With Hellickson’s recent struggles, Piniella said look for Maddon to have a short hook. He noted that the Rays bullpen is well rested and Maddon won’t hesitate to get them going if Hellickson struggles early.
Piniella said players don’t get tired at this time of the year and the Rays have done a good job defensively so it’s surprising to see their miscues. Piniella did say that Fenway is a tough place to play and the Rays still have great defense.