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Rays Tales: How the Tampa Bay Rays got to 1,000 wins

There was a lot, besides nearly 14 seasons and 2,245 games, that went into the Rays recording their 1,000th victory in franchise history last week. A look inside that large round number:

Comparatively speaking

The Rays lineup from their first win, April 1, 1998, with Dave Martinez in rightfield, and the lineup for win 1,000, for which he was the bench coach:

Win No. 1

Quinton McCracken cf

Miguel Cairo 2b

Wade Boggs 3b

Fred McGriff 1b

Paul Sorrento dh

Dave Martinez rf

John Flaherty c

Rich Butler lf

Kevin Stocker ss

Rolando Arrojo p

Win No. 1000

Desmond Jennings lf

B.J. Upton cf

Evan Longoria 3b

Ben Zobrist 2b

Sean Rodriguez ss

Brandon Guyer dh

Casey Kotchman 1b

Kelly Shoppach c

Justin Ruggiano rf

David Price p

By opponents

Blue Jays 120 Orioles 119

Red Sox 94 Yankees 84

Royals 65 Rangers 57

Mariners 56 Tigers 51

Twins 51 Angels 49

A's 48 White Sox 46

Indians 42 Marlins 37

Phillies 12 Nats/Expos 9

D'backs 8 Mets 7

Astros 6 Braves 6

Padres 6 Rockies 5

Brewers 4 Cubs 4

Pirates 4 Cardinals 3

Dodgers 3 Giants 3

Reds 1

Home plate

37 Different stadiums the Rays have won in, including one game each at AT&T Park (Giants), Busch Stadium (Cardinals), RFK Stadium (Nationals), Tokyo Dome (vs. Yankees) and Wrigley Field (Cubs).

By comparison

How long it took to get 1,000 wins compared to other expansion-era teams:

Team Games Team Games

Royals 1,898 D'backs 2,020

Blue Jays 2,076 Angels 2,095

Marlins 2,122 Brewers 2,129

Nationals 2,138 Rockies 2,148

Astros 2,208Rays 2,245

Mets 2,296 Mariners 2,328

Padres 2,375 Rangers 2,380

Milestone wins

No. Date Opp. Winner

1 4-1-1998 11-8 vs. Det. Arrojo

100 7-7-99 3-2 vs. Bos. Eiland

200 9-29-2000 8-6 vs. Bos. Yan

300 8-4-0210-3 vs. CWS Kennedy

400 6-2-04 4-2 at Min. Waechter

500 8-19-05 2-1 vs. Tex. McClung

600 5-28-07 6-5 vs. Det. Glover

700 7-6-08 9-2 vs. KC Shields

800 8-3-09 10-4 vs. KC Kazmir

900 8-18-10 8-6 vs. Tex. Shields

1,000 9-7-11 5-4 vs. Tex. McGee

Time warp

The Rays' improvement is obvious looking at 100-win increments:

To win Games To win Games

100 246 200 237

300 274 400 264

500 232 600 251

700 200 800 181

900 176 1,000 184

Game boys

To get to 1,000 wins, the Rays:

303 players used, with 110 pitchers getting victories

19,905 1/3 innings played

.260 Batting average, scored 10,102 runs, hit 2,172 home runs

4.69 ERA, threw 331,471 pitches, allowed 2,587 home runs

On the other hand …

1,683 Games the Rays needed to lose their first 1,000

9-11 memories

• Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg was in his office two blocks away with a clear view of the World Trade Center and felt the attacks before he saw them. He and his employees evacuated, and he walked amid the disaster and debris 4-5 miles to his sister's apartment. He still has the shoes he wore — "still covered in the soot, stored in a plastic bag where I can see them. Amazing it has been 10 years.''

• The Rays played the first game at Yankee Stadium after the attacks, on Sept. 25, 2001, participating in an emotional ceremony, wearing NYPD/FD and Port Authority caps and donating their day's pay to the relief effort (and winning 4-0). "It was very emotional,'' said bullpen catcher Scott Cursi, the only uniformed Ray left. "And almost like a World Series atmosphere.''

Rays rumblings

Executive vice president Andrew Friedman was No. 1 on the Chicago Tribune's most recent "power ranking" of candidates for the Cubs GM job, which noted he "has all the goods that the Ricketts family likes — young, analytical, successful — and raided the Cubs system when he gave up Matt Garza;" senior VP Gerry Hunsicker was 14th. … Who thought we'd see the day when Johnny Damon had shorter hair than Joe Maddon? … The Rays don't have any presence in the Moneyball movie, though Damon's departure from the A's is a central, and somewhat negative, theme. Former Rays Carlos Peña and Chad Bradford are featured. … Guy Gallagher's Tropicana Field visiting clubhouse was voted second best behind Yankee Stadium in the Sports Illustrated poll of MLB players. … RHP James Shields' 2012 option went up $500,000, to $7.5 million, because he pitched 600 innings over 2009-11, and that could increase another $500,000 if he's a top-five finisher in the Cy Young voting. … One theory on ex-Rays GM Chuck LaMar's resignation from his job with the Phillies, per the Philadelphia Daily News, is a dispute over investment in player development. Others say that's not it.

Got a minute? James Shields

Must-see TV? Entourage.

Big night out meal? Bern's Steak House; I really like the dessert room.

Band you'd like to be on stage with? I'd have to go with Metallica, for sure.

Worst job? At Bed Bath & Beyond, in appliances. It didn't last very long, put it that way.

With your wife Ryane's permission, dream date? (Actor) Mila Kunis, from Friends With Benefits and Forgetting Sarah Marshall.


at home


on the road


in the day


at night


on grass


on turf

Rays Tales: How the Tampa Bay Rays got to 1,000 wins 09/10/11 [Last modified: Saturday, September 10, 2011 5:54pm]
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