It's high fashion: Introducing the 'BRayser'

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Everything is going right for the Tampa Bay Rays lately. They just completed an impressive sweep of the Texas Rangers, signed their top draft picks and are stocking up on some alleged pitching talent.

So why the need for a wardrobe gimmick? Because it’s pretty dang sweet, that’s why.

It’s called the “BRayser” — which in case you couldn’t figure it out, is what you get when you combine “Rays” and “Blazer.” I can only assume it’s an ode to Dodgeball’s “Blazer”, and it’s also mandatory dress for the team’s West Coast road trip that begins on Thursday in Oakland.

That’s B.J. Upton wearing his BRayser in the photo above.

Joe Maddon, who got in trouble earlier this season for wearing a hoodie, loves the look:

“They’re fabulous,” he said. “They met with everybody’s approval.” Local fashion designer Julia Alarcon did the creative work, with Rays TV man Todd Kalas coordinating the months-long project.

In 2008 it was Mohawks, last year it was hair dye, this year it’s the BRayser, all in the name of building team unity.

What will it be next year? Maddon glasses for everyone? Or perhaps matching championship rings?

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The Cubs will try to clinch the NL Central on Tuesday

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The Cubs soundly defeated the Cardinals on Monday night, 10-2, sending their magic number down to one. They will try to clinch the NL Central on Tuesday with another win against the Cardinals. Alternatively, if they lose, they can still clinch if the Brewers also lose on Tuesday.

The Cubs, of course, won the Central last year en route to winning their first World Series since 1908. It wasn’t nearly as easy this year as the club was below .500 entering June and was exactly at .500 entering July. A 16-8 July, 17-12 August, and 15-8 September have helped put the Cubs back in position to return to the postseason.

Not to be forgotten, the Cardinals were eliminated from NL Central contention with Monday’s loss. Now they have their sights set on the second NL Wild Card slot and currently trail the Rockies in that race.

The matchups for Tuesday’s action:

Carter Capps to undergo surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome

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Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union Tribune reports that Padres pitcher Carter Capps will undergo surgery this offseason to address thoracic outlet syndrome, which doctors believe caused the right-hander’s blood clots. The Padres hope to have him ready by spring training next year.

Capps, 27, underwent Tommy John surgery last year and didn’t debut this season until August 7. He made 11 relief appearances, yielding nine runs on 12 hits and two walks with seven strikeouts in 12 1/3 innings. He went back on the DL on September 12 due to the blood clot issue.

The Padres acquired Capps from the Marlins last July in the Andrew Cashner trade which ended up having a lot of moving parts. Capps will enter his third and final year of arbitration eligibility this offseason. It’s quite possible the Padres choose to non-tender him.