Much was made about the Tampa Bay Rays not wanting to play a doubleheader yesterday at Fenway, but a little-known CBA provision allowed the Red Sox to schedule the games without direct permission of their opponent. The Rays preferred to play the game at a later date in part because they’d stunk lately. The Sox preferred to shoehorn it in for much the same reason, and to keep the few off dates they have later in the season open for other possible makeup games.
The decision to play two backfired for the Sox, who lost both games by a run each. At 2:24 a.m. Friday morning, Rays manager Maddon took a cheap shot on Twitter about the whole incident, referencing the visitor’s clubhouse at Fenway Park:
Proud of our boys . All the convoluted stuff yesterday, then spending all day in Fenway’s diminutive clubhouse made it tough to win a split.
— Joe Maddon (@RaysJoeMaddon) May 2, 2014
It’s weird Maddon would say something given that earlier in the day he said he wouldn’t cry about having to play the two games.
“Yeah, we wanted to just play one game today based on a lot of different factors,” Maddon told reporters Thursday . “Of course we’d like to move it back based on a lot of things that are going on with us right now. But that didn’t happen. If it didn’t happen, you just go out and play. You don’t cry about it. You don’t make excuses about it.”
Rays player rep Ben Zobrist was the most vocal about not wanting to play the doubleheader, but after the game, Rays closer Grant Balfour pleaded ignorance about the controversy.
“I didn’t know we didn’t want to play two,” Balfour told the Tampa Bay Times. “No one asked me. I’m pretty happy that we did.”