Rays at Yankees, with no Pena, Upton
UPDATE, 6:04: Maddon said Pena will get two days off - lefty CC Sabathia starts for the Yankees on Thursday - in hopes he can rearrange his thought process at the plate. Pena wasn't pleased of course, but said he understood and would always put the team ahead of his personal feelings. Maddon also said he originally planned to play Pena tonight, but after seeing him in Tuesday's game decided to accelerate the plan. ... Maddon did say he thought Upton looked tired at the plate and could use another day off even though he was rested on Sunday. ... In response to questions, Maddon said they mostly likely would use four starters in the first round of the playoffs, and it was possible they would carry three catchers, which would allow them to use Dioner Navarro as a defensive replacement. ... Obviously the Rays want to win tonight to make sure they aren't swept and have a chance for a split, but there is another benefit - if the Rays win tonight it eliminates the possibility of the Yankees clinching a playoff berth in front of them on Thursday.
UPDATE, 3:48: Manager Joe Maddon has shaken up the Rays lineup, benching 1B Carlos Pena and CF B.J. Upton against Yankees righthander A.J. Burnett. Instead, Ben obrist is in center and Dan Johnson at first, with Dioner Navarro and Reid Brignac getting the chance to play.
The move isn't being made to rest Pena and Upton, since both were out of the lineup on Sunday. It may be for matchups though, as Pena is 5-for-35 against Burnett with one homer, and Upton 7-for-36.
The Yankees lineup - corrected to show Gardner at leadoff:
DEVELOPING: The Rays are trying to reverse their September stumble and gain back some ground on the Yankees in the AL East race tonight when they face the Yankees in the third game of their four-game series.
Rookie Wade Davis, seeking to extend his winning streak to a team-record eight straight games, will be on the mound against enigmatic Yankees veteran A.J. Burnett.
The Rays are 2 1/2 games out going into the game, and haven't been more since late July. They are also playing for the advantage in a potential tiebreaker with the Yankees, as the season series is tied 8-8.