ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Rays (96-64) are headed back to the postseason, clinching an American League Wild Card spot on Friday night. The Rays 6-2 win over the Toronto Blue Jays, coupled with the Cleveland Indians 8-2 loss to the Washington Nationals, earned Tampa Bay a playoff berth for the first time since 2013.
It will be the fifth postseason appearance in Rays franchise history.
Tampa Bay will face Oakland in Wednesday winner-take-all AL Wild Card game, which will air on ESPN. If the Rays, a half-game behind the Athletics for the first Wild Card spot, jump the A’s over the final two games, they’ll host Wednesday’s game at Tropicana Field. Oakland holds the tiebreaker.
The winner of Wednesday’s game would advance to face either the New York Yankees or Houston Astros in the American League Division Series, beginning Friday.
Oakland won the season series, 4-3.
The Rays have two games remaining against the Blue Jays, while the A’s finish the season in Seattle.
Tampa Bay has won seven of its last eight games and is now a season-high 32 games over .500. If they sweep the Blue Jays this weekend, they’ll finish with the best regular-season record in team history.
The last time the Rays won 97 games, in 2008, they made their lone World Series appearance.
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