Yes, America -- the Rays are in the ALCS. After a decade losing and just plain awful teams, they are one step closer to the World Series; however, they've got to get through the Evil Empire 1A, the Red Sox.
Tampa clinched a ticket to the playoffs as they beat the White Sox, 6-2, thanks a strong performance from Andy Sonnanstine and two home runs from B.J. Upton. Gavin Floyd, who had a strong past couple of weeks got lit up, and the bullpen could not save them.
Meanwhile, the Rays sailed through game four in Chicago, and in the end, Grant Balfour -- yes him -- closed out the game.
Congrats to the Rays as they've given all small market and bad teams hope that there's light at the end of the tunnel if you stick with a plan to rebuild, luck, and extremely good management from top to bottom.
Chicago had a nice little run and clutch performances to get into the playoffs; however, their luck ran out as they went head to head with a complete Tampa team.
The Red Sox finally punched their ticket to the ALCS as they downed the Angels 3-2, thanks to a Jed Lowrie walk-off single that played Jason Bay -- who slid head first -- in the bottom of the ninth.
In what has to be a deflating loss for the Angels, it was an action packed game filled with lost opportunities. They've lost 12 out 13 to the Red Sox, and in each game, they could not seem to land the knockout punch.
The Angels scored in the eighth plating two with Torii Hunter's single in the eighth to tie the score, but they could not chop off the head of the Sox.
Boston got two runs in the fifth, one thanks a botched groundball that could have been a double play would have ended the frame, but allowed Mark Kotsay to score.
For the second year in a row, Boston find itself closer to the World Series thanks on the part of the Angels being unable to score when needed and finishing off their opponents.
The Rays and Red Sox meet again in 2008, this time for all the marbles. This should be "The Series" to watch and both have teams have a compelling storyline that has built up over the season.
Bet on Baseball at BetUS.com - America's favorite sports betting destination for all sports fans; adding more excitement and bonuses than any other sportsbook; on the web.