RAYS 6, White Sox 2 (boxscore)
THE GOOD: Still Alive. The Rays have played 159 games and they are still alive. There are just 13 teams that can say that. And 10 of those teams are going to make he playoffs. That may not seem like much consolation right now, but making the playoffs isn’t easy in baseball. And the Rays have now been in contention the last week in four of the last five seasons. That’s impressive…David Price. Hats off to the first 20-game winner in Rays history…BJ Upton. Maybe it was because of his impending free agency. Or maybe this is just another one of his hot stretches. But it is nice to see Bossman go out with a bang. After 2 home runs yesterday, he now has 21 second half home runs. Only Miguel Cabrera (25) has more in the AL. And if he gets 2 more HRs in the final series, he will be the first 30-30 player in Rays history. Actually, Upton is already the only 20-20 (3 times) player in team history.
THE BAD: Elimination Number is 1. The Rays elimination number is now one. That is, if they lose another game, or if the A’s win another game, it is over. The only way in which the Rays can make the playoffs is to sweep the Orioles and hope the Rangers sweep the A’s. And even then, that will only force a tie…Schedule Doesn’t Help. On the one hand, the Orioles are still battling for the division title, so they will play hard. And while it might sound nice that the A’s have to play the Rangers, there is a big reason to worry. If the A’s win the first game, the Rays are eliminated. But if the A’s lose the first game, the Rangers clinch the division. And that means the Rangers will likely have a tripla-A lineup for tomorrow’s game…Numbers Game. You guys know I have been saying this for weeks. Making the playoffs this year was, in some ways, harder than last year. Why? Because it is just too much to hope that 3-4 good teams all start playing losing baseball at the same time. And now we see just how true that was. The Rays are 9-1 in their last 10 and are still 3 games out of a Wild Card spot.
THE TELLING: The Rays are now 88-71 and their chances of making the playoffs have fallen all the way to 1.0% according to CoolStandings.com…Fernando Rodney has tied Dennis Eckersley for lowest ERA ever for a relief pitcher that threw at least 50 innings (0.61).
THE JUNKYARD DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Be sure to click the <Read More…> below for a video of Ben Zobrist really using his head.
- Hey, no pressure Alex Cobb. Just the season on the line. [TBO.com]
- David Price would vote for himself for AL Cy Young. [TampaBay.com]
- Reads like a eulogy, but here are the 2012 Rays by the numbers. [TampaBay.com]
- So the Dodgers got a secret TV deal with MLB and don’t have to share their TV revenue like the rest of the clubs. How did that happen? [BI Sports]
- Want to know what happened to the Bucs? Joe Bucs Fan has you covered. [JoeBucsFan]