Big series? Not really
Imagine if there was no wild card in Major League Baseball and you had to win the division to win make the playoffs. Last week's series between the Rays and Yankees at the Trop would have been huge and this week's four-game series in New York would be epic. Instead, much of the punch has been taken out of the series -- at least that's how New York Daily News' baseball columnist Bill Madden sees it. Madden writes:
September was in the air and so was all the added pomp and circumstance for Yankees-Rays, separated as they were by a mere half-game atop the AL East with but two weeks left to play.
It was everything pennant race baseball should be at Yankee Stadium Monday night except for one thing: There wasn't one. Not here in this division, where, thanks to the wild card, the Yankees and Rays long since have carved out their postseason niches.
Click here to read Madden's entire column.
I don't know about you, but until the Rays actually clinch a playoff spot, there's a bit of concern, especially because it seems the pitching and offense continue to swap taking nights off. When the pitching is on, the offense is asleep and when the offense is cooking, the pitching disappears. The Rays have a 6 1/2 game lead over Boston for the wild card with 13 games left. (Boston has 12.) It would take a massive collapse to miss the postseason. Still, until the Rays clinch, nothing seems guaranteed.