TORONTO — The Red Sox have 41 games remaining. The Rays have 45, the Tigers 43, and the Orioles 43.
It may not seem like a big deal on Aug. 14, but those extra days off — including four in the final 21 days of the season — could help the Red Sox secure the division title and perhaps home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.
The gaps in the schedule will allow manager John Farrell and pitching coach Juan Nieves to line up the rotation in the most advantageous way. That could mean extra rest for the pitchers who have worked the most or putting certain pitchers against teams they have had success against.
The days off also could allow Farrell to squeeze a few extra outings out of relievers Koji Uehara, Junichi Tazawa, and Craig Breslow.
It's impossible to say how many wins that could lead to, if any. But if the schedule contributes to even one or two victories, that could be the difference in the pennant race.
• Toronto traded infielder Emilio Bonifacio to Kansas City today for future considerations. The Blue Jays also placed outfielder Colby Rasmus (left oblique) on the disabled list. Toronto called up outfielder Kevin Pillar and shortstop Munenori Kawasaki from Triple A Buffalo.
The Blue Jays are selling off spare parts because they're 17 games behind the Red Sox. That's not a scenario anybody envisioned when the season started.