Over the past few years, the Tampa Bay Rays have disturbed the Baseball Gods by being an awkward 3rd Wheel in the AL East race.
Thankfully, the Red Sox have a chance to crush the Rays’ Division Title hopes with a strong showing over the next couple of days. The Red Sox and Yankees are tied atop the AL East, with Tampa lagging 9 games behind. If the Red Sox can even take 2 out of 3 games this series, it would appear the Rays would be out of contention: since they would face a double-digit deficit with only 40 games to play. Eliminating the Rays would restore balance to the baseball universe – leaving the Sox and Yanks in a head-to-head battle.
A two-horse race would likely mean that both the Sox and Yanks could cruise into the Post-Season since the Angels (9.5 games back) are the only other team that poses any threat to the Wild Card slot. That would make the rest of the regular season a battle to build momentum and earn home field advantage for a potential Red Sox-Yankees ALCS showdown.
The Red Sox need to step up and bury the Rays once and for all so we can focus on the classic Boston – New York race that we know and love.
This is easier said than done. The final game of the Yankees-Rays series this weekend was postponed due to rain, so the Red Sox will have to face Staff Ace James Shields this afternoon.
Shields in one of the best pitchers in the AL. He has thrown 8 complete games this season and comes in with a 2.80 ERA. Hopefully Jon Lester pitches to his ability to start things off on the right track. Look for a hard fought Pitchers duel at 1:05 that will set the tone for this Series. Rain has been pouring on Beantown for the past couple of days, so hopefully mother nature allows for both games of today’s double-header to be completed.
It’s time to get rid of the Rays.
Those Cowbell Ringing Idiots in Florida don’t deserve to be part of the best rivalry in sports!