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Sept. 28 Baseball Collapses

In arguably the wildest night in MLB regular season history, the Red Sox, Rays, Braves and Cardinals entered the 162nd game competing for two playoff spots, the AL and NL wild-card berths. What unfolded next was the stuff of legend. In the NL, the Braves blew a ninth inning lead to lose 4-3 to the Phillies in 13 innings, while the Cardinals cruised 8-0 to complete their late season tear, winning 23 of their final 31 games. Once trailing Atlanta by 10.5 games on Aug. 25, St. Louis improbably clinched a playoff spot.

The American League was even crazier. Boston -- which led Tampa Bay by nine games on Sept. 4 -- seemed on the verge of staving off collapse, taking an early 3-2 lead over the Orioles while the Rays fell behind the Yankees 7-0. It was not to be. Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon surrendered consecutive hits to Chris Davis, Nolan Reimold and Robert Andino to lose 4-3. The Rays stormed back behind a pair of dramatic homers from Evan Longoria -- including a 12th inning walkoff -- to win 8-7.

Rays' manager Joe Maddon summed it up best. "It was a crazy night," he said. "What happened out there goes beyond imagination."

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