Games 136 & 137 - Red Sox
White Sox 4, Red Sox 2
Red Sox 7, Orioles 4
I, like many others, have spent the summer viewing the Tampa Bay Rays with a sort of bemused, patronizing eye. Nice little team. Great story. Be a shame when the big boys finally kick sand in their scrappy faces in September.
Ladies and gentlemen, I stand before you today a reformed man, for I am a believer. The Sox are playing for the Wild Card, and there's really no disputing it. Tampa's been great all year long, with one notable stretch right before the All-Star break. The Rays have the AL's best home record, and the league's 2nd-best road mark. Their bullpen is lights out, and despite injuries to critical regulars, they keep winning. If they play .500 ball over their final 27 games (let's say 13-14), the Sox will have to go 17-8 to tie for the division lead. The Sox, despite their injuries, could plausibly post a .680 record, but I don't see the Rays underperforming.
Good on you, Tampa Bay, and let's hope you can put more than 12,000 in the stands in the ALDS.