Maddon: Today's game makes "dramatic" difference
Rays manager Joe Maddon acknowledged the obvious in discussing the importance of today's game, with the Rays playing for the chance to get within two games of the Sox rather than drop back to four out with only 10 left after today.
"At this time of the season we do need to go three out of four right now, there's no question,'' Maddon said. "To leave here being down by two as opposed to being down by four is dramatic. We definitely have a much more legitimate chance to get to the playoffs if we're able to win this game today. I'm not saying that it's over if it doesn't happen, I won't say that. But mentally I think it puts us in a better frame of mind and mentally it can be very difficult for the Red Sox. It's a nice little swing game we've got going on today.''
If the Rays are four down after today, Maddon said the Rays would be in a position of having to win their last 10 and hope the Sox struggle immensely. "At that point you almost have to be perfect,'' Maddon said. "Because you're going to have to almost win out and they're going to have lose almost half their games. So it's dramatic, it's pretty dramatic the difference. ... Let's just get today's game and they we'll worry about Tuesday's game. Getting today's game could be very significant.''