Rays Can Carve Their Path To The Postseason By Winning Key Series
Even if Rays’ Manager Kevin Cash admitted to “scoreboard watching”, how could he know who to pull for?
Heading into Saturday’s action the Rays are just 3-1/2 games behind the New York Yankees for the top Wild Card Spot. However, they are tied with the Seattle Mariners and Los Angeles Angeles Angels 1/2-game behind the Minnesota Twins for the second wild card spot.
Creeping up in the Rays rear view mirror are the Kansas City Royals (1-game back) and the Baltimore Orioles (1-1/2 back). In total six teams are withing three games of the second wild card spot. With things as tight as they are it is difficult to scoreboard watch.
“I try not to pay too much attention, but I know people are talking about it but it seems like there’s a new wild card leader every single night.” Cash said. “A lot of ballgames to be played. I think the best thing about our schedule, I can’t speak for everybody else’s schedule, is that we’re going to have an opportunity to play those teams that are right there with us.”
The Rays schedule features a three game series at Tropicana Field against the Seattle Mariners on August 18 through 20th. They have a trip to Kansas City to take on the Royals for three from August 28 through 30th.
They will host the Minnesota Twins for three from September 4 through 6th. They have six cracks against the New York Yankees. Three are at home (September 11 through 13th) and three in New York (September 26 through 28th).
They play the Orioles in seven of their last 10 games including a four game series September 21 through 24. They finish their 2017 regular season with three against the O’s September 29 through October 1st at Tropicana Field.
In the stranger things have happened category, they also have six games against the AL East leading Boston Red Sox. They travel to Boston for three games on September 8 through 10 and host the Red Sox at Tropicana Field September 15 through 17th.
With so much swirling around the Rays right now and so many teams involved in the AL wild card, it may be best to keep the blinders on.
“I think it is. Look just go win games.” Cash said. “There won’t be any excuses at the end of the year because we’re going to have the opportunity to go beat the teams that we need to beat.”
The final 44 games of the schedule features 29 games against teams either ahead of them or within 1-1/2 games of their current position in the standings. There will be no backing into a playoff spot for this Rays team, they’ll have to do it the old fashion way….earn it.