It wasn’t easy, but the Tampa Bay Rays are heading to the MLB postseason for the third time in four years. The Texas Rangers were the last team in the Rays’ path and it’s obvious that Tampa Bay wasn’t about to have the hometown Rangers win the American League’s second wild card spot.
Instead, David Price managed to go nine innings on Monday as his complete game win was incredibly efficient. To be honest; this wasn’t the performance many MLB fans expected as Price has a career record of 1-7 versus Texas, and has definitely struggled versus the Rangers over the years.
So, thanks to Evan Longoria‘s three-hit night and an overall team effort; the Rays and their $60 million payroll are back in the playoffs. While mid-season additions like David DeJesus did play a rather large role in Tampa Bay’s victory; it’s an old formula for the Rays that continues to win them games.
Building talent throughout the minor league and watching it blossom on the big-league diamond is the system that has allowed Joe Maddon‘s club to have this much success. Without homegrown players like Longoria and Price, the Rays are lucky to even win 90 games this year, let alone make the postseason.