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Tampa Bay Rays News and Links: magic number down to 3

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Tampa Bay Rays v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images

The Rays fell to the Baltimore Orioles on Sunday by a score of 2-1. While it is admittedly hard to sweep a five game series, it is still frustrating that they could not capitalize on Ryan Yarbrough’s stellar performance. As I’m writing this the Yankee game has not yet finished, but the Red Sox are ahead 10-1, and the Yankees have Erik Kratz, their third string catcher, pitching. So I’m going to go out on a limb here and assume that they will end the day still 3.5 games ahead of New York, with their magic number for the division title down to 3.

Tonight they visit Citifield to take on the Mets. I believe some fella named deGrom is starting, but it’s OK because we’ve got TBD.

Rays News:

Wander’s in the pool!

Disregard those “Wander Franco has been called up” rumors on Twitter. He has been added to the 40 man post-season player pool is all. At the moment that simply means that he gets to move into the Vinoy hotel with the rest of those in quarantine. But it means there’s a chance.....

Austin Meadows has hit the IL and his return is uncertain. Juan Toribio discusses how the Rays will fill the gap he leaves.

Marc Topkin looks ahead to potential postseason matchups ($)

Did anyone notice that Tyler Glasnow seemed to be throwing pretty darned hard in his Friday start? Gameday, as per Marc Topkin, clocked one pitch at 100.9, which Topkin said is his fastest pitch ever. Brooks baseball puts it at even a tick higher (101.4). Still looking for Glasnow to marshal all his tools for a stretch because he certainly can be dominant.

And has anyone noticed that the unflappable Kevin Cash has become a bit snarkier, at least when the topic is the Yankees? We have all enjoyed his “stable” remarks. And this weekend he was asked whether he has concerns about being caught by the Yankees, who are on tear. His response ($):

“We’re not overly concerned with what they’re doing....we don’t plan on losing either.’’

Around the League

Not many of us had the Marlins as playoff bound this year, especially after the team suffered the league’s worst COVID outbreak. But here we are! ($)

Justin Verlander at first pushed back against reports he was out for the season, but now has announced he’ll be undergoing Tommy John surgery. Looking at the typical recovery for this procedure that would mean he’d miss all of 2021. The 37 year old intends to come back, however.

Chapman may not serve his suspension for throwing at Mike Brosseau until 2021? Huh? No one seems to know why.

This article ($) is about the Cubs, but relevant to all postseason teams. They will all be meeting teams in the postseason they have not played all year. Of course this can happen any year in the World Series, but in 2020 you may go through an entire postseason playing teams you know only from scouting and video. Does that matter?

Old friend alert: Wade Davis, who was most recently with the Colorado Rockies, has been designated for assignment. After having stellar bullpen years for the Royals and Cubs, his time in Colorado has been, shall we say, rocky?

And speaking of position players (that is, Erik Kratz) pitching, gotta love this:

Let me leave you with this lovely Schoolhouse Rock song: