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Who’s The Evil Empire Now? Rays Say Rule Gives BoSox Right To Force Doubleheader

Fenway Park in Boston (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Fenway Park in Boston (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Red Sox lobbied for a doubleheader to be played Thursday after rain in Boston washed out Wednesday’s scheduled game against the Tampa Bay Rays.

The struggling Rays wanted no part of a double dip.

But this one goes to the Red Sox, mainly because Boston gets what it wants, according to the Tampa Bay Times:

“Rays acting player rep Ben Zobrist said that their objections — which officially included a questionable weather forecast for today, and several other makeup possibilities during May and September visits — didn’t matter.

“In short, the Rays were told by MLB that the Red Sox (and Cubs) have exceptions to the standard rules in the Basic Agreement ‘to basically exercise their own right to do what they want to do.’ “

The Times ran hard with the angle. Its headline, “Rules give Rays no say in playing doubleheader,” was mild compared to what readers were greeted with on tampabay.com:

A screen shot of the Tampa Bay Times' website ahead of Thursday's Rays-Red Sox doubleheader. (tampabay.com)

A screen shot of the Tampa Bay Times’ website ahead of Thursday’s Rays-Red Sox doubleheader. (tampabay.com)

The Red Sox announced Thursday’s split doubleheader prematurely, according to the Rays, which resulted in “hours of confusion and conversation” with MLB and the players association, the Times reported.

The Rays’ official website published the portion of the Collective Bargaining Agreement in question, which states “the Boston Red Sox and Chicago Cubs shall have the right to reschedule a postponed game as a split doubleheader to be played in, respectively, Fenway Park and Wrigley Field, even if the criteria set out … are not met. Scheduling a postponed game as part of a conventional doubleheader will not be considered a practical alternative.”

The big winner in all this could figure to be the New York Yankees, who will host Tampa Bay for a three-game set starting Friday.

“It’s frustrating that the weather is bad; it’s probably not going to be much better tomorrow morning from what we’re looking at,” Zobrist said. “And based upon our wishes, that it didn’t matter what we said, that’s frustrating. That we didn’t have any say in it. Besides that, it won’t be frustrating if we win two games tomorrow.”

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