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One Down, Three to Go

by Cameron on September 13 at 12:25AM | comments (2)
And on the sixth day, God made it rain on Fenway Park. And rain it did. But because the Blue Jays don't visit again this year, they played anyway.

Thank you, God, for raining on a Tim Wakefield start.

wawkefield.pngNot only did the rain help Wake's knuckleball tonight, it helped get the Red Sox on track at the cost of Toronto, dumping the Blue Jays rather unceremoniously just one night after they won their 10th of 11 games. In doing so, the Jays had re-invigorated their dormant postseason chances, if only slightly.

Those wild card hopes may be back on the ropes, but they're not dead yet, even after a dismal 7-0 loss in the rain.

In fact, all the Jays really need is a three-game run against the Sox, starting early tomorrow afternoon. That would close the Wild Card gap to a remarkably strike-able range, particularly considering the fact that Boston still has three games in Tampa Bay and three more against the Yankees to close out the season.

That's right baseball fans, this is a much bigger series than you thought it was. If the Red Sox take care of business, Toronto is done. If they don't, the Blue Jays will suddenly -- and instantly -- make this a three-team wild card race, assuming the Twins don't find a way to implode over the weekend.

WMYM is going to say that it won't happen because we don't think Toronto can beat both Bartolo Colon and Paul Byrd in the same day. Sure, Colon is a wild card, but if he's feeling good and locating his fastball he can beat just about anyone. Byrd, meanwhile, has been as efficient as any pitcher around. If the Sox can find a way to claw out 3 or 4 runs, Byrd will give them a shot at a win.

If, however, the unthinkable happens and the Sox drop two straight, Sunday's game will suddenly become a make or break affair for both teams.

Still, while tomorrow may hold a season's-worth of significance for Toronto, it has additional ramifications for Boston, too. Wins tomorrow keep Boston in the hunt for the AL East title. Losses kill that. Wins buoy a second baseman's MVP candidacy, losses might drag it down. Wins build steam toward the postseason, losses cool what has been -- two dramatic losses to Tampa Bay aside -- a blistering pace for Boston which rekindled a once dormant divisional race and all but sewed up a playoff berth.

Two games, one day, two directions. One keeps the Red Sox in the AL East race and all but clinches a postseason berth, the other kills off divisional hopes and throws the wild card race into flux.

It's moving day, folks. Pack a lunch and get ready for a long ride.

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