The GBT – The Good, The Bad and The Telling sandwich, where The Bad is nice and lean and the The Telling is ripe.

click above image for boxscore

THE GOOD: They’re Back! For the second time in three seasons, the Rays will be in the playoffs despite playing in the toughest division in baseball. How improbable is what the Rays did this season? Of SI.com’s 13 baseball “experts,” only three predicted the Rays would make the playoffs and only one thought they would win the division. Congrats to all the players and the front office. It has been an up and down season, but it has been a fun ride so far…Cy Price? David Price put an exclamation point on his season with 8 shutout innings and 8 strikeouts. It was his 19th win. More importantly, he improved to 4-0 with a 1.67 ERA in September when the games matter most…Red Sox Are Now Officially Roadkill. With wins by both the Rays and Yankees, the Red Sox were eliminated from postseason contention. Better luck next year.

THE BAD: The Wild Card. This is the downside to the Wild Card. What exactly were the Rays celebrating last night? “Hey, we are at least the Wild Card team!” It is just awkward and will diminish the celebration should the Rays win the East.

THE TELLING: Last night’s attendance was 17,891…The Rays’ magic number to clinch the division is now 4 with 5 to play (the Yankees have 4 games remaining)…According to CoolStandings.com the Rays now have a 100% chance of making the playoffs (82.0% chance of winning the division).

WHERE THEY STAND: The Rays are 94-63, a half-game ahead of the Yankees. After 157 games in 2008, the Rays were 95-62.

THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA

  • Here is video of several players talking about clinching a playoff spot during the postgame celebration. [Sun Sports]
  • More videos of the celebration from the clubhouse including Briggy Baseball dancing. [The Heater]
  • Roger Mooney has comments from different members of the team on clinching a postseason berth. [Tampa Tribune]
  • Joe Bucs Fan looks at whether the Rays postseason schedule will conflict with any Bucs games. [Joe Bucs Fan]
  • Gary Shelton argues that David Price should win the AL Cy Young. [St. Pete Times]
  • Remember that Rays exec that had his AL Championship ring stolen? Instead of paying the pawn shop a few hundred dollars to get it back, he is suing to have it returned. The comments from the Pawn Shop owner don’t paint a great picture. [St. Pete Times]
  • The Lakeland Ledger calls Dan Johnson the Rays’ Mr. September. [Ledger.com]
  • A Yankees bloggers understands that the Rays attendance issues are much more complicated than “they have no fans.” [TYU]
  • Here is part 2 of the look at the Durham Bulls’ season. [Watching Durham Bulls Baseball]

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4 Comments

  1. Amanda says:

    Thanks to the link to TYU, Cork! What a great commentary!!

    Btw … Woo-hoo!! :)

  2. Dre says:

    I also find it interesting that of those SI predictors, while Longo and Davis got a few votes for MVP and ROY, not ONE have Price for Cy Young.

  3. Gus says:

    Congratulations to the players and to management. This is the toughest accomplishment in sports — to make it out alive after 6 months with the rest of the Al East. They did it with brains, effort and without an obvious steroid contributor on the team, something the Yankees and Red Sox have never been able to say in the last 10 years or so.

    Now go bring home the division — as that is critical to the ultimate goal of homefield advantage throughout the AL playoffs.

    Here is hoping some of the african american community make it to the Trop tonight on the free ticket gambit, a group that has been woefully underrepresented in the fan base since 1998, despite the stadium’s proximity to a large community who should love this team, which should be marketed nationally as black america’s team. Not since the 1970′s Pirates or perhaps the 1980′s Cardinals has a good MLB team had this many quality players of color from America.

    (Desperately trying to change the story line for the playoffs away from the Rays finances. . . )

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