Here we go again. So close to first place we can taste it. And it’s a familiar and oh-so-delicious taste. Like a Cinnabon. Or an icy-cold beer on a hot summer day. A Red Sox win and a Rays loss put us right back to where we were last Tuesday; in a virtual tie for top spot in the AL East. The only thing standing in front of the the Red Sox winning is Zach Jackson (pictured above showing off the results of his Crest Whitening Strips). With Josh Beckett (and his sub-one ERA since coming off the DL) on the mound for Boston, I like our chances.

Meanwhile, the Rays try to hang on to sole possession of first place against the Orioles tonight. Joe Maddon elects to let David Price make his major league debut as a starter in a critical September game. Hard to question Uncle Junior, as most of his moves have obviously worked. But if the Rays cough up the division and end up with the wild card, well, the questions will come. Starting with yesterday’s loss:

The Rays rested several starters Sunday, including shortstop Jason Bartlett, second baseman Akinori Iwamura and catcher Dioner Navarro after they clinched a playoff berth on Saturday. First baseman Carlos Pena was the designated hitter, while center fielder B.J. Upton started for the first time since straining his left quadriceps on Sept. 8.


Don’t forget we have Kevin Millar on our side tonight. He may wear an Orioles uni but he bleeds Red Sox red.

The Sox definitely have their eyes on the division, and I still think they will end up taking it. Big Papi might think so too, he’s waiting for a party.

Slugger David Ortiz admitted a preference to clinching at home, saying, “The best way to celebrate is by (messing) up your clubhouse. I’m not going to be popping champagne at my house.”

7:05. Don’t miss it.