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In Progress: Rays Grab Early Lead As They Try To Clinch Playoff Berth

The champagne is on ice, and the fans (what few there are at Tropicana Field at least) are ready to celebrate. All that’s needed now is one more win by the Tampa Bay Rays, and the once moribund franchise will be back in the postseason party for just the second time in team history. So far, so good through the first three innings of Tuesday night’s game against the Baltimore Orioles. The Rays lead 1-0 thanks to B.J. Upton’s RBI single in the bottom of the 2nd off Orioles’ starter Brad Bergesen. Tampa Bay is still at-bat in the bottom of the 3rd inning. Carl Crawford is on first after singling with nobody on and 2 out.

Stay tuned for more updates throughout the night as the Rays try to clinch their postseason ticket with less than a week remaining in the 2010 regular season.

Photographs by cstreet.us, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.