Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 9/6/12

The Tampa Bay Rays could have been closer to the top had they not thrown away Wednesday's game.

But with 25 games left -- including three against the New York Yankees and six with the Baltimore Orioles -- manager Joe Maddon likes where his team is just fine.

"We're doing a lot of things well," he said Wednesday after Tampa Bay's 6-4 loss to New York. "I have nothing to lament or worry about right now. I think we look great, not just good. If we keep playing like this, we're going to win a lot of games the rest of this season."

The pitching has been extraordinary, and the Rays feel the staff is deep enough to get through the rest of the season even without the benefit of help from Jeff Niemann, who made it back after missing 3 1/2 months with a broken leg only to be sidelined again due to shoulder issues.

The team feels its defense has been suitably stabilized with the move of Ben Zobrist to shortstop and Ryan Roberts to second and the return of Evan Longoria to third on at least a part-time basis.

That leaves the hitting, and Maddon plans to mix and match -- even more than normal -- to try to maximize the production against each night's opponent.

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