For starters: Rays vs. Red Sox, with 20 to go
UPDATE, 5:35: Maddon said it was a better matchup for Luke Scott to be in the lineup than Wil Myers vs. Buchholz. ... Maddon said he still felt the Rays had a chance to win the AL East, and that he wanted the team to look at the remaining schedule as "20 one-game series" and not get too caught up in the big picture. .. RHP Jesse Crain had another encouraging bullpen session and could face hitters as soon as Friday, optimistic he will pitch for the Rays.
Red Sox lineup:
DEVELOPING: Having enjoyed what they could of their last off-day of the season Monday after an early morning arrival from Seattle, the Rays tonight open their final stretch of 20 games to the finish line against the rival Red Sox.
Whether it ends with them going on to the playoffs - at least the one-game wild-card - or going home will largely be determined by what happens over these 20 days.
The Rays start the day holding the second of the two AL wild-card spots, trailing the Rangers by 2 1/2 for the top spot and - more importantly - leading the Indians and Orioles by 1 1/2, the Yankees by 3 and the Royals by 4.
The Rays will have ace David Price on the mound tonight in what they had hoped would be a showdown series with the Red Sox for the AL East title. But the Rays rough 3-7 road trip, and extended 4-11 run, left them 7 1/2 behind the Sox.
Boston will have RHP Clay Buchholz on the mound tonight in his first start since coming off the DL.
Lineups when available.
Here are the remaining games for the wild-card contenders:
RAYS (20 games): 3 vs. Red Sox, 3 at Twins, 4 vs. Rangers, 4 vs. O’s, 3 at Yankees, 3 at Jays.
Rangers: (20): 3 vs. Pirates, 3 vs. A’s, 4 at RAYS, 3 at Royals, 3 vs. Astros, 4 vs. Angels
A’s (19): 3 at Twins, 3 at Rangers, 3 vs. Angels, 4 vs. Twins, 3 at Angels, 3 at M’s
O’s (19): 3 vs. Yankees, 3 at Jays, 3 at Red Sox, 4 at RAYS, 3 vs. Jays, 3 vs. Red Sox.
Indians (19): 2 vs. Royals, 4 at White Sox, 3 at Royals, 4 vs. Astros, 2 vs. White Sox, 4 at Twins
Yankees (18): 3 at O’s, 3 at Red Sox, 3 at Jays, 3 vs. Giants, 3 vs. RAYS, 3 at Astros
Royals: (18): 2 at Indians, 3 at Tigers, 3 vs. Indians, 3 vs. Rangers, 3 at M’s, 4 at White Sox