September 29, 2011- The 2011 Major League Baseball regular season did not lack in drama the last night of the regular season. Four games played by eight teams trying to win two playoff spots fueled the excitement last night. After 161 games for each team, it came down to just one night.
Two of those teams, the Boston Red Sox and Atlanta Braves can now consider themselves members of the “We Blew It” club. Two other teams, the St. Louis Cardinals and the Tampa Bay Rays should feel as though they were winners of the lottery that looked next to impossible to win just three weeks ago.
Just 23 days ago, the Atlanta Braves lead the St. Louis Cardinals by 8½ games. By the end of the game last night, the Braves were headed home to a long winter and the Cardinals to the playoffs. Fast forward to Baltimore, Boston is one out from winning and guaranteeing themselves at least a one-game playoff with Tampa for the wildcard spot in the American League.
Nevertheless, Baltimore got a clutch two-out double to tie the score and then a single to win the game. That marked the 20th loss of September from the Red Sox. Then to add to their misery, Tampa Bay rallied from a 7-0 deficit in the eighth inning to tie the score against the New York Yankees. Then they won the game in 12 innings behind a home run by Evan Longoria.
The bottom line is that the Red Sox go home for the winter and Tampa Bay stays to play another day.