Rays lose again, setting up wild final Sunday
The Rays lost another game to the last-place Jays 7-2 on Saturday and lost control of their own destiny to get straight to the wild-card game heading into what will be a wild final day of the regular season.
The Rays are now tied with the Rangers, who beat the Angels again, at 90-71, and one-half game behind the Indians, whose game at Minnesota started late after a rain delay.
So the Rays (90-71) go into Sunday needing to win to at least extend their season to a tiebreaking Game 163 on Monday, but that's all they can control. Depending on what the Indians and Rangers do, it's possible the Rays could be in a one-game playoff at Texas on Monday or part of a three way tie, which would have the Rays playing in Cleveland Monday and - if they lose - again on Tuesday in Texas, just to get to the wild-card game, which would be Wednesday night, and much less likely to be at Trop.
The Rays will have Matt Moore on the mound Sunday, the Jays are scheduled to start Todd Redmond, a St. Petersburg native and product of Northside Christian and St. Petersburg College.
On the positive side, the Rays are in a position to keep playing as long as they keep winning. But they could have made things much easier - and significantly less complicated - with a win on Saturday, and it started ut well.
The Rays took a 1-0 lead in the first Saturday, but rookie starter Chris Archer allowed three straight singles, and the tying run, to open the third and manager Joe Maddon waited only one more batter to go to the bullpen, summoning Alex Torres. That got the rays through the third, but when Torres allowed a bunt single and an infield single in the fourth, Maddon called for Jamey Wright, the 18-year veteran trying to reach the postseason for the first time.
That didn't work out too well, as Wright loaded the bases with a walk to Brett Lawrie and allowed a two-run single to Adam Lind that put the Jasy up 3-1. The fifth was worse, as Wright allowed a leadoff single and a two-run homer to Ryan Goins. Brandon Gomes finally replaced Wright, and he gave up a two-run homer to his first batter, making it 7-1.
After winning seven straight, the Rays have not looked anything like a playoff team these first two games in Toronto, making a season-high three errors on Friday and then managing just six hits on Saturday.