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View Full Version : Will the Rays hold on and win the AL East?


aryzner
09-04-2008, 11:29 AM
I've been loving the Rays story this year and I'm hoping they'll win their division, but their remaining schedule is rather tough. They're currently 3 games above the Red Sox and their remaining schedule is as follows:

1 vs NYY
3 @ TOR
3 @ BOS
3 @ NYY
3 vs BOS
4 vs MIN (let's go Rays!:D:)
4 @ BAL
4 @ DET

I bolded the Twins series simply because we'll be loving it if the Rays can win 3 or maybe 4 to sweep. :smile:

Pretty tough final month of the season overall. So I ask ye baseball minds of WSI, will the Rays hold on and win the AL East?

I would love for them to pull it off.

doublem23
09-04-2008, 11:33 AM
I don't know if they will hold on for a division title, but they'll almost certainly make the play-offs.

Though, it wouldn't bother me one bit to see either Tampa Bay or Boston completely tank

PorkChopExpress
09-04-2008, 11:55 AM
That is a nasty schedule. I didn't realize they have six left with the red Sox. Those should be good games. And if they beat each other up, it may benefit the Central if the Sox and Twins can stop tripping over themselves.

palehozenychicty
09-04-2008, 01:16 PM
If they are in first against Baltimore on the 22nd, I think they'll win the division. If not, then the wild card will be a doozy. :o:

D. TODD
09-04-2008, 02:09 PM
I firmly believe the Red Sox will win the east. The Rays would have to totally collapse to miss out on the wild card though. I doubt the Twins/Sox loser will get in.

Foulke You
09-04-2008, 04:03 PM
They definitely aren't as scary without Longoria and Crawford in the lineup. If those two were still there I'd say there is no way that they could blow this but I figured eventually, they would start to miss their production. Rays are still a very good team though that can win that division or wild card. The Red Sox are heating up at the right time though and they play a ton of games at Fenway Park in September where they are really tough to beat. It wouldn't surprise me if the Red Sox end up winning the East and the Rays becoming the wild card.

Like Doub's thought, I wouldn't mind seeing both teams tank to increase the chance of the wild card coming out of the AL Central. Anything that helps our Sox get in!

TDog
09-04-2008, 04:37 PM
They definitely aren't as scary without Longoria and Crawford in the lineup. If those two were still there I'd say there is no way that they could blow this but I figured eventually, they would start to miss their production. Rays are still a very good team though that can win that division or wild card. The Red Sox are heating up at the right time though and they play a ton of games at Fenway Park in September where they are really tough to beat. It wouldn't surprise me if the Red Sox end up winning the East and the Rays becoming the wild card.

Like Doub's thought, I wouldn't mind seeing both teams tank to increase the chance of the wild card coming out of the AL Central. Anything that helps our Sox get in!

In July I expected that the Rays would tank in late August and September. There no longer is anything more than a glimmer of hope for the Yankees, but I don't believe the Rays will beat out the Red Sox for the East. I don't think the loss of Crawford has hurt the Rays as much as a lot of people here believe. Crawford wasn't as dangerous this year as he has been in the past. And they are getting by without Longoria. Maybe they will hold off the Red Sox or the Red Sox will go into another funk.

I expect the Rays could be the wild card competition with the loser of the race between the Twins and White Sox. Fortunately, Indians management gave up on the season before the trade deadline so Cleveland doesn't need to be worried about.

I'm of the school that believes it's unfortunate that baseball has to allow a second-place team into the postseason, but if the White Sox are beat out by the Twins and prevail over the Rays (or Red Sox), you won't hear me complaining.

JLong
09-04-2008, 06:15 PM
I think TB will win with a similar or greater lead than they have today.

guillensdisciple
09-04-2008, 07:23 PM
I love their story but I don't see them winning the division with the competition they will receive. They will make the wild card but I will watch for a close race from us, the twins, and the yankees. Yes I still think that the yankees can and will make a run for the wild card seeing as how they are playing the rays so well right now.

Fenway
09-05-2008, 02:01 PM
It will come down to which team can win in the other team's park as so far all 12 games have been won by the home team.

Boston wants the division badly simply because they do not want to face Anaheim in the LDS.

The Red Sox and Rays will both make the playoffs however as I can't see either team having a 2007 Mets collapse.

If the Rays get everybody back for the playoffs they are my choice to win the pennant.

soxpride724
09-05-2008, 02:05 PM
It will come down to which team can win in the other team's park as so far all 12 games have been won by the home team.

Boston wants the division badly simply because they do not want to face Anaheim in the LDS.

The Red Sox and Rays will both make the playoffs however as I can't see either team having a 2007 Mets collapse.

If the Rays get everybody back for the playoffs they are my choice to win the pennant.



I agree, a healthy Rays team scares even the mighty Anaheim.

Fenway
09-05-2008, 02:36 PM
We will have a better handle on Boston's chances after Beckett pitches tonight in Texas.

Still the major roll of the dice in unloading Manny has not hurt the club so far as Bay has adjusted well to the AL.

Pedoria has been the key to the Boston surge the past 3 weeks and now Ortiz is getting better pitches to hit and he is delivering. Boston could actually wind up with best record when all is said and done as Anaheim seems to be sleepwalking right now.

Toronto will have a lot to say in this as they want to at least finish ahead of New York. The Yankees will be playing for pride as they close The Stadium but I expect as soon as Scranton is eliminated from the AAA playoffs Cashman will want to see what the kids can do at the MLB level.

wilburaga
09-05-2008, 03:07 PM
Toronto will have a lot to say in this as they want to at least finish ahead of New York. The Yankees will be playing for pride as they close The Stadium but I expect as soon as Scranton is eliminated from the AAA playoffs Cashman will want to see what the kids can do at the MLB level.

The slow death of the Yankees will be a major source of amusement for me in the upcoming weeks. Couldn't happen to a smarmier group of fans.

W

Fenway
09-06-2008, 11:21 AM
Tampa goes to Boston for 3 starting Monday and then the following week they host the Red Sox at The Trop.

Boston appears to have its swagger back and getting key players off the DL they seem to be getting ready for October. Based on last night it appears all Beckett needed was a couple of weeks and Mike Lowell also came back from the DL strong.

Epstein and Francona have done a good job getting the team to peak now and that is partly due to the memory of 2005 when they went to the playoffs with the rotation in tatters and were forced to use Matt Clement as a Game 1 starter.

That said the great unknown is how Tampa will react to fall baseball as the 6 games with Boston are the biggest in franchise history.

It looks like a classic horse race with an upstart trying to hold on with a proven champion closing fast on the rail. I am really looking forward to the 6 games.

guillensdisciple
09-06-2008, 05:50 PM
If the Rays survive this to win the division they will be the scariest team in the playoffs regardless of their inexperience. They are only 2.5 up and are about to face the red sox who are absolutely hot. If they can come out of this alive there won't be any way to stop them, kind of like the Sox in 05. We were pushed to the limit and came out of it just fine.

Hopefully the rays collapse, I actually would love to see them out of the playoffs (this would be the biggest collapse in the history of baseball I am sure). They are an annoying team to play against and I just don't see how the sox match up well against them.

Chisox353014
09-06-2008, 11:28 PM
Amazingly, the Sox now have the same size division lead as the Rays and a smaller Magic Number.

guillensdisciple
09-06-2008, 11:32 PM
Amazingly, the Sox now have the same size division lead as the Rays and a smaller Magic Number.
Kind of funny isn't it, we are actually have a lower number then the east, and only trail the nl central magic number by 1 and most of use were panicking because they thought at this point everything was supposed to be decided.
Not even the cubs, who are apparently the team of god, could decide their division this early.

There is time for the sox to make their move, and for other teams to lose ground, hell maybe the twinkies will come back and win the wild card and the sox win the division.

Thats a bit unrealistic but the fact that we wouldn't have to face someone from the east would make me a happy man.

LoveYourSuit
09-07-2008, 12:00 AM
Kind of funny isn't it, we are actually have a lower number then the east, and only trail the nl central magic number by 1 and most of use were panicking because they thought at this point everything was supposed to be decided.
Not even the cubs, who are apparently the team of god, could decide their division this early.

There is time for the sox to make their move, and for other teams to lose ground, hell maybe the twinkies will come back and win the wild card and the sox win the division.

Thats a bit unrealistic but the fact that we wouldn't have to face someone from the east would make me a happy man.


You bring up a horrible example when those two divisions (AL East and NL Central) will be the two divisions having the representatives for the Wild Cards. Even if their respective Magic Numbers are higher or the same as ours, they are all pretty much guaranteed a play off spot anyway.

Our panic is more due to the fact that a Division Championship is the only way we will get in.

sox1970
09-07-2008, 04:27 PM
It's looking more and more like the winner of the Central will be at Fenway on October 1st.

DSpivack
09-07-2008, 04:34 PM
It's looking more and more like the winner of the Central will be at Fenway on October 1st.

There really is no way to tell right now. It's looking like the wild card will come from the East, but the Rays are still in first, plus the Angels and Rays' records are close enough that you can't tell which one of those will come out with the better record.

sox1970
09-07-2008, 04:37 PM
There really is no way to tell right now. It's looking like the wild card will come from the East, but the Rays are still in first, plus the Angels and Rays' records are close enough that you can't tell which one of those will come out with the better record.

The Central winner will play the Red Sox or Rays, since the two East team cannot face each other in the ALDS.

Just leaning toward the Red Sox coming back to win the division.

TDog
09-07-2008, 08:12 PM
...

Our panic is more due to the fact that a Division Championship is the only way we will get in.

The panic is due to the conditioned pessimism White Sox fans function with. The Blue Jays are in a better situation. So are the Red Sox. But neither of them are guaranteed a spot in the postseason. The White Sox could pass up either the the Rays or the Red Sox, especially if the Rays keep playing as they have been playing (in which case they would lose games to the Red Sox who could pull away from the White Sox).

The fans most justified in panicking are Twins fans, especially after losing two of three in a home series, winning the first game (which seems a given in the Metrodome) and losing the two close games that followed -- after jumping out to a lead.

White Sox fans are panicking, however, because they just assume team will lose three in the Metrodome and that the Twins won't lose when it matters.

Fenway
09-08-2008, 11:20 AM
Boston Globe columnist ponders if winning the division is worth the bother....

http://www.boston.com/sports/columnists/massarotti/2008/09/sox_and_division_could_be_bad.html

nsdjoe
09-08-2008, 04:47 PM
Boston will win easily imo, they have way too many home games and the Rays have way too many road games.

I'm not too broken up about it, though; our Sox have proven they can beat theirs in the ALDS :D:

guillensdisciple
09-08-2008, 07:58 PM
game over for the rays, Cinderella is done, look for another team to come back and take the wild card. Of course now that I say this they will probably come back but their schedule doesn't bode well for them and I don't think they can muster up many more miracles.

Fenway
09-08-2008, 08:47 PM
Boston wins 3-0 to close within 1/2

But there is no way Tampa or Boston is not the WC...right now the Twins are 7 behind.

Red Sox will be playing White Sox in 3 weeks


game over for the rays, Cinderella is done, look for another team to come back and take the wild card. Of course now that I say this they will probably come back but their schedule doesn't bode well for them and I don't think they can muster up many more miracles.

DSpivack
09-08-2008, 09:01 PM
game over for the rays, Cinderella is done, look for another team to come back and take the wild card. Of course now that I say this they will probably come back but their schedule doesn't bode well for them and I don't think they can muster up many more miracles.

The only other teams up there are the Sox and Twins, and neither has been playing well of late.

chisoxfanatic
09-08-2008, 09:15 PM
Boston wins 3-0 to close within 1/2

But there is no way Tampa or Boston is not the WC...right now the Twins are 7 behind.

Red Sox will be playing White Sox in 3 weeks
The Red Sox have yet to win a game in Tampa this year, and they still have to go there. Tampa will hold on.

CHISOXFAN13
09-08-2008, 09:22 PM
The Red Sox have yet to win a game in Tampa this year, and they still have to go there. Tampa will hold on.

Tampa is not the same team they were earlier this year.

They better start worrying about that four game set against the Twins.

guillensdisciple
09-08-2008, 09:45 PM
Absolutely right, their hitting has gone to hell. They will get in the playoffs but I really wish we could play them... if only we could get hot and somehow wind up with the best record in the AL.

Bucky F. Dent
09-08-2008, 09:46 PM
It's looking more and more like the winner of the Central will be at Fenway on October 1st.


What do we have to do to get El Duque on the roster.:D:

sox1970
09-08-2008, 09:47 PM
Absolutely right, their hitting has gone to hell. They will get in the playoffs but I really wish we could play them... if only we could get hot and somehow wind up with the best record in the AL.

I like the symmetry of the Red Sox, Angels, and the wildcard team from the NL Central.

EuroSox35
09-08-2008, 09:55 PM
Through Jun-Aug I told all my friends that they'd blow it, I was sure of it, towards the end of Aug I was about to be ready to start eating some crow, hmmm, maybe not...

Even though we hate domes and haven't been great against TB, I'd still feel more comfortable against them compared to Boston though

guillensdisciple
09-08-2008, 10:02 PM
I think the Rays would actually be the Sox worst nightmare in the playoffs had they been playing well going into them and if the sox make it. The Sox just don't match up well, their pitching drives Sox hitters crazy whereas the Angels pitching really doesn't do as great. I think the Sox can beat the other Sox in a playoff series because we would only face Dice- K twice and as for Josh Beckett the Sox can hit him.

I think the Angel's worst nightmare would be to face the sox in the playoffs, it seems like U.S. Cellular hasn't been their best friend since the '05 run.

LoveYourSuit
09-08-2008, 10:14 PM
Fenway Park was the last place I wanted to start a play off series.

Tampa can't draw flies, I would gurantee the Sox fans can scoop up 30% of the tickets avail for those two games. Florida has a good amount of Sox fans. The homefield crowd would not be over-powering as it will be at Fenway.

Fenway
09-08-2008, 10:18 PM
Tampa may lose the division but they will be playing in October.

Very simply it comes down to can Boston win next week at The Trop and yes being September they most likely will. Boston is built to play fall baseball and it appears they are peaking.

Tampa Bay is on the verge of knocking the Yankees out of there 8 Teams One Champion equation which is mind boggling. The Rays at worse will win the Wild Card which of course causes sleepless nights in Chicago and Minneapolis.

The playoff seedings are in flux as top seed is there for the taking by everybody.

It should be obvious that I am trying to root both Sox teams into October. Then whatever happens...happens (just like 2005)

I am pretty certain Anaheim will be beaten in the LDS as they are sleepwalking right now.

DSpivack
09-08-2008, 10:27 PM
Tampa may lose the division but they will be playing in October.

Very simply it comes down to can Boston win next week at The Trop and yes being September they most likely will. Boston is built to play fall baseball and it appears they are peaking.

Tampa Bay is on the verge of knocking the Yankees out of there 8 Teams One Champion equation which is mind boggling. The Rays at worse will win the Wild Card which of course causes sleepless nights in Chicago and Minneapolis.

The playoff seedings are in flux as top seed is there for the taking by everybody.

It should be obvious that I am trying to root both Sox teams into October. Then whatever happens...happens (just like 2005)

I am pretty certain Anaheim will be beaten in the LDS as they are sleepwalking right now.

It's still early September, they might heat up before the playoffs start. That said, they don't have a team like the Indians to light a fire under their ass to motivate/scare them.

guillensdisciple
09-09-2008, 12:00 AM
Boston is a monster team but I think all teams in the AL line up equally in the playoffs.

The White Sox would probably have the weakest and most inexperienced starting staff BUT their bullpen can hold up with anyone's.

I would give overall pitching to the angels
Overall hitting would probably be a draw between the Red colored and White colored Sox.

The Rays and Red Sox are well rounded teams even though I believe the Red Sox are more hitting based then pitching. They do have some good pitching to boot too.

If the White Sox get into the playoffs they will win the world series if and only if their starting pitchers come through, most importantly the veterans.

Foulke You
09-09-2008, 12:31 AM
Fenway Park was the last place I wanted to start a play off series.

Tampa can't draw flies, I would gurantee the Sox fans can scoop up 30% of the tickets avail for those two games. Florida has a good amount of Sox fans. The homefield crowd would not be over-powering as it will be at Fenway.
I agree. The Rays are tough but inexperienced. I think the veteran White Sox would match up well in October against them. Not saying that we'd walk all over them but I think our offense matches up better against them and I'd feel better about getting a win on the road in short series in Tampa despite our dome troubles.

Fenway Park would not be a good place to start the playoffs. The Red Sox are very good there this year and have a veteran playoff tested team. We could be down 0-2 in the blink of an eye if we don't bring our A game for that one. The prospect of facing Dice-K twice in a 5 game series also doesn't make me feel good because our offense has looked very sick against him. I'd take my chances against them in a 7 game series where 3 of the games could take place at The Cell and the Dice-K factor is slightly less.

STrout
09-09-2008, 12:35 AM
Didn't we start out in Fenway in 05? The wrong sox would be spooked playin us again. I'd prefer to test the mighty upfront. It would be a miserable winter to play the Rays and be out.

chisoxfanatic
09-09-2008, 12:58 AM
Didn't we start out in Fenway in 05? The wrong sox would be spooked playin us again. I'd prefer to test the mighty upfront. It would be a miserable winter to play the Rays and be out.
Games 1 and 2 were at Comiskey. We closed out the sweep in Fenway. We had the best record in the AL and held HFA for the entire playoffs.

guillensdisciple
09-09-2008, 01:17 AM
I agree that the Sox should start out against the Red Sox if in the playoffs. It is better to play the best and beat them if you can because then it is a usual coast to the world series. Of course the ALCS match up won't be a pushover but I expect the Red Sox to be the team to beat and if the Sox can beat them that bodes great things for the White Sox.

Billy Ashley
09-09-2008, 04:18 PM
I agree that the Sox should start out against the Red Sox if in the playoffs. It is better to play the best and beat them if you can because then it is a usual coast to the world series. Of course the ALCS match up won't be a pushover but I expect the Red Sox to be the team to beat and if the Sox can beat them that bodes great things for the White Sox.

Except you never coast in the play offs. If the White sox meet the Red Sox in the ALDS, the team that wins will be the team that is 1) hotter, 2) Healthier, 3) luckier. The same is true in any short series between any two good teams.

In a 5 game series (and a 7 game series as well) the difference between an excellent team and a very good one is so small there's hardly any way to predict who will come out on top. We're talking the tiniest of samples here: That's part of what makes the post season so fun/ heart wrenching.

If the White Sox make it to the play offs then they have done their job. They'll have given themselves like a slightly better than 1 in 8 chance to win the entire thing. After that, it's about playing hard and catching breaks.

Fenway
09-09-2008, 10:33 PM
Huge win for Tampa at Fenway tonight in a great game. Boston had it all set up with a Bay homer to take lead in 8th but Papelbon got lit up in the ninth.

The Rays just may well hold on given what I saw tonight.

hellview
09-09-2008, 10:53 PM
Huge win for Tampa at Fenway tonight in a great game. Boston had it all set up with a Bay homer to take lead in 8th but Papelbon got lit up in the ninth.

The Rays just may well hold on given what I saw tonight.

I don't see it happening. Boston still has a good hunk of games at home and Rays are on the road for a few more I believe and they suck outside of the Trop.

JimRivera
09-09-2008, 11:22 PM
The Rays got to Papelbon and stunned the crowd at The Fens last night.
I really felt that if the Red Sox hung on the free fall for the Rays was on.
Now, it's a crap shoot.
I heard both games on XM radio today ...Toronto with the current ten game win streak was just bad timing for the Sox to have on the schedule just now.
AJ Burnett is unbeatable now, also.
Minnesota is all messed up now, so the Sox can establish a lead with steady play...maybe play .600 ball and win the division by two games.:cool:

Fenway
09-09-2008, 11:32 PM
I don't see it happening. Boston still has a good hunk of games at home and Rays are on the road for a few more I believe and they suck outside of the Trop.

Yes Boston does play the last week at home but the Rays showed me a lot tonight. They will leave Boston with the lead no matter what and
know tomorrow that there will be no Papelbon who has pitched 3 straight games and looked gassed in the 9th tonight.

Of course now you have to wonder if Toronto is pulling a Colorado and they have 6 left with Boston.

Who needs fingernails.

doublem23
09-10-2008, 08:23 AM
I'd much rather face the Red Sox in the ALDS. If we've come to the consensus that they're better than us, then the shorter the series, the more likely for an upset.

I just want to get to the play-offs. :(:

palehozenychicty
09-10-2008, 08:26 AM
Yes Boston does play the last week at home but the Rays showed me a lot tonight. They will leave Boston with the lead no matter what and
know tomorrow that there will be no Papelbon who has pitched 3 straight games and looked gassed in the 9th tonight.

Of course now you have to wonder if Toronto is pulling a Colorado and they have 6 left with Boston.

Who needs fingernails.


They play Boston well also. They have looked so much better with Gaston manning the ship.

doublem23
09-10-2008, 08:31 AM
They play Boston well also. They have looked so much better with Gaston manning the ship.

I would be terrified of the Blue Jays if the made the post-season. They have insane pitching right now.

palehozenychicty
09-10-2008, 08:49 AM
I would be terrified of the Blue Jays if the made the post-season. They have insane pitching right now.


Me too.

hellview
09-10-2008, 09:45 AM
I'd much rather face the Red Sox in the ALDS.

Yeah cause who doesn't wanna go against postseason ledgend Josh Beckett healthy or hurt.

doublem23
09-10-2008, 10:24 AM
Yeah cause who doesn't wanna go against postseason ledgend Josh Beckett healthy or hurt.

:scratch:

The shorter the series, the better for the underdog.

guillensdisciple
09-10-2008, 10:30 AM
Don't care who we face as long as we make it, anything is possible, the rays will probably hold on. They are the 2005 Sox in ray form towards the end here. Cutting it close but this wi n might cataupalt them back to first for the rest of the year but we shall see.

Playing the Jays in the playoffs WOULD BE THE WORST POSSIBLE THING THAT COULD EVER HAPPEN to the Sox.

illini81887
09-10-2008, 10:45 PM
Pena with a big 3run HR in the 14th

soltrain21
09-10-2008, 11:02 PM
This game is awesome.

RockJock07
09-10-2008, 11:12 PM
Rays win, the Red Sox pissed it down their pants. Bases loaded, no outs, only get one in.

Fenway
09-10-2008, 11:25 PM
Classic Bucky Dent type of home run....just knew by the arc it would just make it. I will never understand how the Sawx gave up Pena as he is a local kid.

Tip of hat to the Rays for winning 2 of 3 at Fenway.

JimRivera
09-11-2008, 12:22 AM
Wow, has Mike Timlin ever deteriorated. Maddon got Percival just in time, but Tito had to go with Timlin and man he paid dearly.
Pena was with Detroit a while, too, and they also let him get away. :scratch:

Lip Man 1
09-11-2008, 12:35 AM
Detroit let him go if memory serves because he was flat awful, had a BA of something like 200 and lost his home run power.

His confidence was shot and he started making bad plays in the field as well.

Lip

Fenway
09-11-2008, 08:23 AM
Boston has to win at least 2 in Tampa next week to have any shot for the division. Otherwise they simply have to lock up the Wild Card and get the rotation set for Anaheim.

More importantly the last 2 games have given Tampa a nice boost of confidence that they can win anywhere when it matters.

We were amazed last night how much of the Boston crowd stayed for the entire game that ended at 12:10 AM. Many have no choice but to leave as the commuter trains to the burbs all have their last trips at 11:59 PM and also it was a school night.

palehozenychicty
09-11-2008, 09:02 AM
I don't think you can fault anyone for giving up on Pena. Sometimes it takes longer than you think. He was talented enough to hang around on several teams, so they all saw something in him. I think the Rays are heading to the postseason on a good note with these wins.