On the final night of the regular season, the Tampa Bay Rays had their prayers answered when a monumental comeback against the New York Yankees and a simultaneous collapse by the Boston Red Sox allowed the Rays to sneak into the playoffs as the AL Wild Card. Now that they're in, they won't have any time to reflect on the miracle that was their September, because they'll have to prepare to face the AL West-winning Texas Rangers.
The Rangers may not seem particularly fearsome - truth be told, no one outside of the Philadelphia Phillies seems particularly fearsome - but they did finish with a run differential of +178, and some midseason bullpen additions bolstered perhaps the team's only weakness. The Rays have done what they've done and that can never be taken away from them, but they won't be satisfied with just getting to the playoffs, and if they want to advance, they'll have to beat a hell of a team that knocked them out just last year.
The series schedule:
|Gm 1||TB @ TEX||Fri||Sep. 30||5:07 PM||TBS|
|Gm 2||TB @ TEX||Sat||Oct. 1||7:07 PM
|Gm 3||TEX @ TB||Mon||Oct. 3||5:07 PM
|Gm 4*||TEX @ TB||Tue||Oct. 4||TBD||TBS|
|Gm 5*||TB @ TEX||Thu||Oct. 6||TBD||TBS|