Well we're through 148 games so after some inspiration from Rays Baseball Talk I decided to go back and look at the standings last year at after game 148 and compare it to this year. Below is the result of that:
Despite it looking similar and giving hope, let me brush away the sugar coating and say there are a few things to take note. For example, last year we caught Boston in the middle of a historic collapse that without it we would not have made the playoffs last year. This year there's not 1 but 3 teams ahead of us in the wild card and to pull off another miracle run to October, all three would have to collapse. I just don't see that happening.
Another thing contributing to last year that we don't have this year is offense. Last year the bats showed up in our hour of need. This year they haven't. And to compound the problem the pitching is falling apart too.
So taking this all in to consideration, the Rays are really long shots for October. It's not impossible, but incredibly unlikely. This team looks defeated and deflated. So if you ask me, hope we finish with a winning record then just get ready for 2013. You can't win them all.
By the way, please don't misunderstand me, the boys played hard all year and did nothing to be really ashamed of. It just wasn't in the cards for anything really special to happen this year. The injuries, the lack of offense, it just stormed together to provide the most disappointing season of baseball in Rays franchise history. These boys will bounce back strong in 2013, you can take that to the bank.