Maddon’s Road Theme Mastery Strike Again
Ahhhh the always popular Tampa Bay Rays Joe Maddon inspired theme parties as the squad embarks for the airport and their chartered trip to Wonderland. This time unlike the “All White” or “Cowboy” themed endeavor, this one brought about some unique creativity and unity, plus a possible fantasy wish granted in absentee for some of the Rays curious female fans.
But there were a few disturbing trends hidden within the themes themselves. Why is it the clothing of choice for much of the assembled slumber party members was the always popular “One-sy”, complete with the backside flap.
That was not the paramount disturbing concern for me, sure seeing Ben Zobrist ensemble of a particular tie-dye madness did strike me a bit….well psychedelic in nature, but it was a twin to his wife Julianne’s fashion pick. Seeing B J Upton even thrusting his Adidas endorsed tracksuit aka “ stealth night maneuvers” for the cool and wicked set did not offend me. But there was one thing that truly struck a chord with me.
And no, it was not the white “One-sy” of rookie starter Jeremy Hellickson or even the Kung Fu Panda-pseudo headgear of Rays reliever Joel Peralta. Sure some of us might awaken tonight from a dead sleep dreaming of Rays broadcaster/ “Lord I was born a Rambling man” Todd Kalas and his Scrooge night cap, but those are just surface things to the real itch that is scratching at my brain stem right now.
Where are the other missing members of the Rays traveling party? Is it possible that we might have “uncovered” something special here? Could we have possibly stumbled on a fact or thing that was once secret about a few of these Rays players?
With guys like Relievers Kyle Farnsworth, Johnny Damon, Rays Bullpen Coach Bobby Ramos absent from the photo, could there be some of the Rays roster who might actually sleep au natural? I know it is shocking to think about it, but you have to ask where the missing Rays might be.
But the again, some people consider their sleep apparel to be of a personal nature and might not want to divulge their tendencies or their nighty-night attire for general public scrutiny. But you got to commend the playfulness of guys like Rays videoographer Chico Fernandez who dressed errily reminiscent of a robe icon Hugh Hefner. That was worth its weigh in gold to see.
It would have been a perfect time for Rays standout Sam Fuld to actually show he wears Super hero inspired sleepwear, but he instead wore a more plain Clark Kent wardrobe of gray sweatshirt and dark blue sweatpants…..Maybe he was in disguise….Legends tend to do that sometimes.
Still, it was a great showing by the Rays, and all in good fun that they participated in another one of Maddon’s always comical and inspiring themed getaway endeavors. Might not have gone over as well as the old tacky golf pants or Brayser road trip ensemble photos, but shows the behind the scenes personalities and playful nature of so many of these Rays players and staffers.
Maddon originally used these events and inspired attire-based fun-tastic time to bring together his fold and unite them off the field as well as on the field. It has produced some impressive moments in photos and individual personality-based clothing options since its inception in 2008. But that is Maddon.
He uses outside the realm of traditional baseball road trip thoughts to make the game seamlessly disappear from his charges minds before his team embarks towards another city. That pushes the team’s subconsciously towards another day, another chance at victory by shedding the game normal travel norms and rules. Outside the box thinking is all Maddon, and I do not see that changing any time soon.
Wonder what is on tap for the upcoming road trip to Milwaukee? Maybe a 50’s inspired wear like Fonzie, Richie, or Laverne? Well, maybe not Lenny and Squiggy.
Pajama Party Photos taken by Deborah Robinson