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Rays vs Indians Preview: Wild Card Game!

We not know the Pittsburgh Pirates are the NL Wild Card team that will get to continue their journey into the post-season.  Tonight we will find out which AL team gets to do the same when the Tampa Bay Rays take on the Cleveland Indians.

Both the Rays and the Indians were involved in a heavily contested race for the AL Wild Card spots that came down to the last week of games, the very last game in the Rays case.  Both teams feel as though they have already been through so much to get to the post-season.  Now one of them will have their underdog-World Series hopes dashed.

You play to win a World Series, but you’ve got to get there first, get to the playoffs. So you play to get to the playoffs, and here we are with that opportunity. It’s just been incredible. The ups and downs of this organization the last few years, we couldn’t ask for anything better.

-Justin Masterson, Indians pitcher

The Rays will be facing a very hot Indians ball team.  The Indians finished up their season with 10 consecutive wins and won a total of 21 games out of 27 they played in the month of September.  This late surge gave the Indians the top Wild Card spot and thus home-field advantage for this game.

The Rays have won some close games through their excellent pitching.  However, their offense is inconsistent often performing well when they have to but overall are lack-luster.


The Pitching Battle


The Rays will be starting right-hander Alex Cobb. Cobb has had an up and down season but not because of his pitching. Cobb missed two months of play after being hit in the head with a line-drive hit on June 15. He returned and posted an excellent 2.41 ERA in nine starts.



The Indians will be starting rookie right-hander Danny Salazar. It will be Salazar’s 11th Major League start. Since coming up to the Indians from Double-A, Salazar has averaged 11.25 strikeouts per nine innings. His young career will hit a new peak when he gets to pitch in this important game.


The Rays are the slight favorites over at Bovada with a -119 moneyline.  The Indians’ moneyline is set at +109.  The lines are similar on all sports books.  The over/under is set at seven runs.

The winner of this game will go to Boston to to take on the Red Sox.   The game is tonight and starts at 8:07 p.m. ET on TBS.  Progressive Field is sold out for the game.

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