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10/1/21: Sock Hunting, Bird Watching, Ray Rooting Open Game Thread

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I’ve never been so invested in the Rays/Nationals/Orioles in my life

Oakland Athletics v Seattle Mariners Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images

If, like me, you’ve been in Zoom calls all day, counting down the minutes until baseball is on tonight...you’re in luck. We have quite an appetizer for you with THREE games on tap.

Game #1: Red Sox (89-70) v. Nationals (65-94)

Why We ROOT: The Red Sox are currently tied with the Mariners, so every loss for the Sawx means a bit more breathing room and lower odds of a one-game playoff just to formally make the playoffs. Plus, it would be hilarious to see the Nats — a team that traded away three of its four best players just two months ago! — beat up on Boston.

Lineups:

For the Red Sox, a lot of familiar names, albeit a strange outfield alignment:

For the Nationals...some less familiar ones:

Game #2: Rays (98-61) v. Yankees (91-68)

Why We ROOT: Two reasons: We love Jeff Sullivan, and a Rays sweep would greatly endanger the Yanks’ playoff standing. The Bronx Bombers enter tonight’s action with a two-game lead over the Mariners and Red Sox.

Lineups:

You might note that D.J. LeMahieu isn’t starting today, though Joey Gallo (who left Wednesday’s game early) is back and starting in left field.

Game #3: Orioles (52-107) v. Blue Jays (88-71)

Why We ROOT: In the final bird-on-bird series of the year, a nice win or two from the pesky O’s would seriously hobble the Blue Jays’ chances. They already sit one game behind the M’s and Red Sox, so two losses would clinch a tiebreaker game at best, and a single loss would be damaging too. Given their two-game lead over Arizona, Baltimore is likely sitting pretty in the #2 draft position regardless of how the weekend plays out, so why not close with a few wins? Do it for CHAOSBALL, right?

Lineups:

The O’s:

And the Jays, complete with Cavan Biggio starting at first: