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Despite loss, Rays actually in good spot

Tampa doesn't have its back against a wall for a change after splitting with Texas

Originally Published: October 1, 2011
By Jim Caple | ESPN.com

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Tampa Bay Rays reached this postseason by spending the entire month of September overcoming almost every baseball obstacle imaginable other than their owner being married to one of the McCourts.

So it simply would have been too easy for the Rays to take a commanding two-game lead in the division series with ace James Shields on the mound for Game 2 Saturday. The All-Star who pitched more complete games (11) this year than anyone had since 1999 suddenly went ...

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