The Tampa Bay Rays begin a three-game series tonight in Toronto against the first place Blue Jays, who are poised to win their first division title since 1993. All three games are sold out, meaning Rogers Centre will be topped with fans starved for a winner.
“You can tell the atmosphere when you see the highlights,” C J.P. Arencibia said. “That city has wanted a winner in all sports.”
Arencibia was drafted by Toronto in 2007 and played with Blue Jays from 2010 to 2013. He said while he was with the organization all the talk was about how much fun it was to play in Toronto during the Jays back-to-back World Series winning years in 1992 and 1993.
Manager Kevin Cash, who came up through the blue Jays organization as a catcher, said he heard the same tails.
“It should be great for us to get in there and play against them and especially good for a lot of these young guys to see that type of atmosphere,” Cash said.
The Rays are 8-5 this season against the Blue Jays, including 4-3 in Toronto. On Saturday they will face former Rays LHP David Price, who they have beaten twice in two meetings since Price was traded to Detroit at the 2014 trade deadline.
Cash said he will manage as if the Rays are still in the race and hope to play the role of spoiler.
“Without a doubt,” Cash said. “We’re going to go in there and give them three good ball games.”
McGee ready tonight
Cash said LHP Jake McGee will be activated from the disabled list tonight and be available out of the bullpen.
McGee has not pitched since he tore his left meniscus Aug. 18 while pitching in Houston.
Sun Sports does not plan to televise Saturday’s game, which is a matchup of Price vs. RHP Chris Archer ... Cash visited Red Sox manager and good friend John Farrell on Wednesday. Farrell is receiving treatment for Stage 1 lymphoma and is not with the team.