The Tampa Bay Rays will need another stirring rally if they want to return to postseason, and might have just the opportunity to get one started during a promising part of their schedule.
The Rays will play nine straight against sub-.500 clubs beginning with Monday night's visit from the Boston Red Sox.
Tampa Bay pulled to within 1 1/2 games of the AL East lead Sept. 4 after a fourth straight win, but is now five games behind New York after dropping seven of 10. The Rays (78-68) also trail Baltimore by four games for the AL's second wild-card spot.
They went 1-5 on a road trip against the Orioles and Yankees, and gave up five runs in the third inning of a 6-4 defeat Sunday to New York. Tampa Bay, which had five hits in that loss, is batting .218 over its last 10 games and .172 with runners in scoring position.
"It seems like we're pressing now," third baseman Evan Longoria said.
Tampa Bay will play six of its next nine games against Boston (66-81) and the ...