Happy Wednesday Sports fans! Today is a good day in the world of sports but not all of the pastures are green.
Today the Rays won in 11 innings, allowing them to win the series against the Jays, moving their record to 27–18, only one game behind the Orioles in the East. Today’s game started off quite scary with Jose Bautista hitting a monster shot into right center for his 12th home run of the season. The good news is that (James) Shields was not bothered by this silliness and went on to strike out 10 in slightly over 7 innings pitched. Thanks Big Game for another great outing! I thank him personally because he is on my fantasy team and helped me take a few categories today.
Earlier I mentioned how not all of the pastures are green right now in the sports world. Let me go ahead and hit that one head on, simply because I have a fresh opinion regarding this topic and because I saw it firsthand today. ATTENDANCE is the word of the day. Today at Tropicana, there might have been 7,000 in the stands. I certainly did not sell a lot of beer. I will go a different road with this one though because I refuse to call anyone out with regards to their wallets and I know that the sports entertainment dollar is a luxury to be able to spend. I of course, appreciate it when more folks come to the games but I also understand that sometimes it is not possible. No big deal. If I work for McDonalds and nobody comes in that day, I will not go out and yell at people for not supporting us, no way. The players do make millions and that is support enough. We buy the jerseys, the hats, watch the games on TV or in person and of course yell “GO Rays!” from roof top to roof. I believe we as fans are supporting the Rays, even if we do not go to games.
I do also want to say this regarding attendance: Do not worry if you can or cannot come, do not worry if you cannot afford to come or just do not want to come. You will not be judged. You are appreciated for supporting this team any way you can and just know, the Rays are not the Red Sox, Cubs, Yankees or any of these other teams that have been around for over 100 years. These other teams have had their time to build up a fan base and do so as the sport was growing. They also have the advantage of being in big cities with lots of people. Tampa is also a transient area where people bring their culture with them, including their home teams. Red Sox fans will be Red Sox fans. The generations that move here, you may convert a few but not them all. The ones born here will be Rays fans and will love this team. It just takes time, so Tampa Bay Rays, we are here for you but be patient with us as we are with you. You have come a long way since Vince Naimoli and we recognize that. So when the northern blood dilutes a bit, expect the Rays to only grow.
There was a reliever in the Cleveland market the other day that called out the fans for not being there. How dare he even say a word? We do not make the money that you do ($2.2m in 2011) and some of us have other obligations. Remember that Chris Perez, Mr. 10 wins and 15 losses, 3.13 ERA, 16 blown saves and an overall average player at best. Maybe you should just keep quiet and work on your pitching.
Now that I have ranted for minute, fans please come if you can, if you cannot, we still love you!
Through 24 home games, the Rays have 475,197 in attendance, not bad considering there are worse attendance records out there, like the Cleveland Indians with 380k after 24 games or the White Sox after 20 games with 405k fans.
Anyway, stop worrying about attendance.
Lebron (James) and the Heat play tomorrow, Miami Marlins play today at home against the Rockies and the Red Sox beat the Orioles. Yes it helps the Rays as we gained a game.
Well, I will see you all in my next post! Remember, be safe and responsible!
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