Why Reopen this Rays Wound Now?

 


 
 

Sometimes this whole Tampa Bay Rays attendance situation feels to me like a cut or a scratch that never seems to want to heal. Just when you think it has finally growing some new skin of its own, it get broken again and you have to dab it with some Neosporin or Aloe Vera to promote the healing process all over from scratch. You want the itching and the clawing of opinions to just go away, but all you can do is keep dabbing the ointment and hope that one day, the final healing process will begin.


It was fine with me when the National and local Media threw their two cents into the ringer on this issue considering I have lost so much respect for the National talking heads (ESPN) and the local fish wrap (St. Petersburg Times) since they were the main culprits in re-opening the wound for such a ling time during this 2010 season. But lately, the infestation has crept into the sanctuary of the Rays clubhouse as the media wishes to expand the illness and infest others into the battle.

First the media got Rays Manager Joe Maddon to speak his mind about the issue, and it was front page fodder. Maddon had inadvertently gone into the media “company line” and protested the lack of fans in the seats earlier in the Rays season, and somewhere in the darkness, the media editors were smiling like Cheshire Cats. They had the Big Kahuna of Rays fandom denouncing the decrease in fans in the seats, but no answers spilled from the Rays skipper on how to correct this ailment.

And the media finally bagged another big fish when they got Evan Longoria, who has not played since last Thursday night to chime in his personal two-cents on the lack of Rays fans in the seats.


“I don’t think there’ any more time for rationalizations. We figured if we have a chance at the beginning of September then maybe the fans will come and now it’s the end of September and its almost October and were still kind of looking up in the seats going where is everybody?”


You got to admire theory of Longoria, who it has been told is healthy enough to play if asked, but is sitting on the bench as a precursor to a healthy playoff push by the Rays. But what has got me to lose some respect points with Longoria is the honest fact he somehow forgot where he plays baseball:


“Obviously we want to bring a championship to Tampa. And we’d like more than 12,000 to 15,000 to know about it.”


The media sirens also honed in last night and got a major coup by capturing Rays All Star David Price in their ever growing circle of attendance disappointment. Price ended up posting a comment on his Twitter page about the lack of fan support.


DAVIDprice14
david price 

“Had a chance to clinch a post season spot tonight with about 10,000 fans in the stands…embarrassing”


Then a few hours later, Price might have been schooled by some of his close allies that it might have seemed a bit empathetic to the plight of most of the Tampa Bay Rays fans personal choices in regards to attending games and issued a small apology making it seem like the emotions churning in the Rays clubhouse possibly influenced his outburst

DAVIDprice14 david price

“If I offended anyone I apologize I did not think it was gonna turn into this…”

The difference in Longoria and Price’s responses compared to the media’s usual firestorm towards the Rays fan base is pretty simple to me. Longoria is a budding leader of massive proportions in this Rays clubhouse, and he might have felt a personal obligation to stoke the fires a bit, but I know he did not mean to make the attack malice or laced in personal agendas unlike the St Petersburg Times. I do however find huge problems with Longoria thinking he goes to work in “Tampa” and not St. Petersburg, but then again, I am extremely proud of this town.


Both Price and Longoria were expressing their own personal feelings and emotions with the Rays fourth smallest crowd of the season. I totally get that, and do feel that this was a time for this community to post up and show their support. But then again I was coached at a younger age to see positives and evoke positives out of a negative situation. It is easy for people in today’s World to focus on the slight negative situations instead of exposing a more positive and encroaching enthusiasm through positive speech.

How easier would it have been for either player to have provided positive comments or even a plea for the fans in this Tampa Bay area to come out and celebrate with the Rays on Tuesday night. Push out a request, a invitation for the Tampa Bay community to join the 10,000+ Rays faithful fans to come celebrate a great 2010 Rays season and toast to a impending playoff campaign.

By the actions and comments of either of these Rays players throwing out positive affirmations and showing “open arms” to inviting the community to their party, the message might not have put some on their heels or even commenting negatively towards Longoria or Price. Positive motivation might get more people in the stands instead of the negative comment of two guys making extreme salaries as opposed to most in Tampa Bay right now.

Opening this ever festering wound of low attendance at this critical point has some beads of merits, but it also could evoke little positive rewards by badgering a community already on it’s heels after tall tales of oil on our beaches and mass unemployment in our community. Alienating some within the Tampa Bay community before an important last two home games and a solid push towards the post season might send some away from the Rays box offices.

Positive emotions and words right now will have people coming to the Trop for the next two games. Finding fault, pushing blame or even attacking those who pay your salary is not productive at this point. It is disappointing to see the army of empty blue seats overshadowing the Rays and their fan base.

Only answer to that is simply to invite the Tampa Bay community to come down tonight or tomorrow and celebrate with friends, family and other Rays fans as this team finishes their primary goal of getting back into the post season. To get that usual FSN/Sunsports broadcast watcher to want to experience this celebration firsthand with his local community friends and neighbors in a positive light, not by pushing him deeper into his Baca lounger with tales of nonsupport and not deserving baseball.

Some people forget that Rays Baseball is a business. With that in mid, if a business or its “employees” constantly admonished my self worth with negative comments addressed towards me for not buying their wares, then my desire for their goods and entertainment would be moot and I would partake in other options. There might lie the root of the whole enchilada.  

12 Comments

I was at the game last night and my initial reaction was I was as embarrassed as Longo. After seeing the DP tweet and after seeing EL’s entire comments, and with time to reflect I got angry. No where in his statements did Evan thank the 12K who showed up and those that do support the team. I was going to go tonight but all of a sudden I feel like, since I’m viewed as an embarrassment, my butt will be watching from home. I did make an attempt to get a tic online, but was having puter problems, so I gave up. without those comments, I would have driven down to the trop…but too much of a buzz kill for me to be up for that.

TBDudette,
You see my point. That is why I respect David Price. He got caught up in the emotion, and willprobably cement his apology by getting us a clinch tonight.
Longoria on the other hand is able to hit (per a team source), but will probably not see any action until Thursday in KC.
Positive affirmation for people to come out and celebrate with the Rays is better than being called an “embarrassment”. I will be there as usual, and if we get only 10,000+ or 25,000+, I will cheer, jeer and hopefully celebrate another milestone.
Positive moments are on the horizon, let the naysayers be damned!

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

SFDiamondgirl,
I know I set my MLBlogs.com page as my homepage, so it always comes up when Ilog onto my computer.
Not sure exactly what you might be needing, but I will take a shot in the dark here.
If you get to your page, and see the like at the top, you should get your page without a hassle.
I will guess that your page is :

http://sfdiamondgirl.mlblogs.com/
That should bring you up top your latest and grestest blog post of record.
I am not sure if I answered the question, but you can always ask more and I can try and figure it out (Post season champagne is clogging my brain cells tonight….

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Rays Renegade

I have a quick question for you, as a veteran blogger here: is there a way to view the page views of my blog?

Thanks!
SF Diamond Girl
http://www.sfdiamondgirl.mlblogs.com

Thanks for your answer and congratulations to your Rays! I actually meant whether there is a way to see when somone else views the blog, to see how many people are viewing it.

SF Diamond Girl
http://www.sfdiamondgirl.mlblogs.com

As tbdudette, my only real problem with what Longoria said is that he did not show the slightest gratitude for the rest of us who did come out.

We all know Price and Longo are class acts who would not lash out at the community for no reason. They are young, they just suffered a frustrating loss that set them back again for a clinch, and the attendance probably poured salt on that wound.

However, the rest of us 12k who do show up on a daily basis… what are we, chopped liver?

I appreciate that Longo was really just trying to rally up the fans, but I think that he went about it the wrong way. It’s basically just setting up a feast for the local media to jump all over.

Charm,
If you know friends who want to attend a Rays game but do not have the funds, the first 20,000 tickets are on Longoria and Price tomorrow.
Might not heal the wound, but it is a nice cooling Aloe Vera pleasure on the wound.
I still think a certain paper with an agenda to stir the pot (SP Times) got the better of both of them last night. By LOngo and Price providing tickets for the LAST home game on their dime to the public, with no strings…..goes a long way to healing the wound and making it all batter.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Congrats to the Rays clinching post season, even though the players want more fans to attend, if they can do it with the limited amount then that just shows how good they are…

-peter
Phillies Outside

Cliffy,

I laughed when I read Longoria’s comments. Especially his (after)thought about bringing a championship “to Tampa”?.

Being that he’s only been with the organization since 2006 I guess I’ll cut him a little slack when it comes to not remembering where his team plays.

What a putz.

Peter,
There are more than just the Rays having fans situation in regards to attendance right now. I know the Reds have had a noticeable decrease, but some of their fans say they were saving money for the post season tickets.
Guess we will find out if that is true since Cincy also clinched last night.
I remember not playing to full houses in college my Freshman year, but by the timeI was a Senior, the house was packed. I understand the fan plight all too well, but Longo definitely is putting his money where his mouth is now.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Bubbamark,
Longo definitely errored in a major way, but I am hearing hedefinitely got cornered, and might be a bit tighter with comments in the future.
That being said, whether it was the Rays or Longo and David Price, the aspect of the FREE tickets tonight is either goingto be a boom in excitement, or a clustermuck of major proportions. Still, would love to see the old Trop filled to the brim to send the guys off to K C knowing this community definitely has their back.
By the way, I was a bit animated when I hit the ballpark last night about Longo’s comments, but my words had a bit more x-rating to them at the time.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

It is sad to see the emptiness. Is it really that inaccessible or do people just not care about baseball in the bay? I mean, they care about the Bucs but not the Rays? HOW CAN THIS BE?!?
–Jeff
http://redstatebluestate.mlblogs.com/

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