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Rays News and Links: Last place Rays are eighth best team in American League

MLB: Tampa Bay Rays at Minnesota Twins Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

As the headline above says, the Rays might be fifth place (a.k.a. last) in the American League East, but in the League as a whole, they rank eighth in terms of ELO -- above the New York Yankees.

This ranking comes courtesy of FiveThirtyEight, who still give the Rays slightly worse odds than New York at finding the playoffs.

The Red Sox and Indians are the only two teams ranked above the Rangers from the American League. You can find the current standings here.

The Yankees (27-30) have played one more game than the Rays (26-30) thus far, and have one more win. Otherwise the teams might be tied.

If the Rays can continue their hot streak to pull back to .500, their playoff aspirations look a lot more real. Possibly even as real as the White Sox (29-28), who are already buyers, trying to overtake the AL Central while 3.5 games back in the standings.


- Desmond Jennings, who has lost his full time job, had a great night in Arizona, including this dinger...

but then wasn't keen on talking to the media after the game. This is reasonable!

He's going through a tough time in a public position and trying to be better. Let's withhold judgement.

- The new Rays stadium is shaping up to be quite innovative, and when all is said and done, it may not include an upper deck!

- Bill Chastain offers his preview of the Rays 13th overall draft selection this Thursday, connecting the Rays with college pitchers Dakota Hudson of Mississippi State (who I find very interesting), Justin Dunn of Boston College, and Cody Sedlock of Illinois, as well as "high school slugger" Josh Lowe from Pope (Ga.) High School.

- Behind the above link, you can read comments from Rob Metzler ahead of his first draft in charge of scouting. For much more from him, listen to the This Week in Rays Baseball podcast.

- Paul Swydan on hitting streaks

- Alex Colome is 16-for-16 in save opportunities, all in the last four days.