BOSTON, MA: On Friday, September 23, the most important series of September will kick off: a 3 game set between the 1st place Boston Red Sox and recently eliminated Tampa Bay Rays.
The Rays have arguably been the biggest headache for the Red Sox during 2016, with the exception of the Sox first half pitching staff, but that problem has been fixed. The Red Sox are only 9-7 against the team currently residing in the cellar of the AL East. They have similar records against the other 3 teams in their division, but those 3 teams all have a winning percentage of .531(NYY) or better with the Rays being at .428.
It is known here around Boston that the Rays seem to try a little harder against the Red Sox, and in baseball, the teams that have nothing to lose are sometimes the most dangerous.
With all that being said, the Toronto Blue Jays are at home against the New York Yankees the weekend of the 23rd to the 25th. Toronto is most likely going to get a series win, but i will not be surprised if the so called “Baby Bombers” stay hot and take two games from the inconsistent Blue Jays. The Baltimore Orioles are playing one of the bigger disappointments of the season, the Arizona Diamondbacks that weekend.
So, if the Rays take two games from the Red Sox, the Orioles will take control of the AL East given that they have a much much easier remaining schedule than Boston, who will only play division opponents the remainder of the regular season. The Blue Jays will not slow down soon either, due to their easier remaining schedule. But, if the Rays act like a team that wins less then 43% of the time, then the Red Sox could be in control, and the favorite to win the most talented and most dangerous division in baseball.
I suggest everyone to tune in to this series, and buckle up for the heart of the pennant race.