The Race in the AL East — Rays Upset with their fans
David Price and Evan Longoria are not impressed. And rightfully so.
The Tampa Bay Rays 4-0 loss to the Baltimore Orioles Monday wasn’t half as disappointing as the plethora of empty seats — a crowd of 12,446 — in St. Petersburg, Florida. A good team who’s on the verge of a playoff berth should have no problem putting asses in the seats no matter who they’re playing, right?
Evan Longoria had this to say to the St. Petersburg Times regarding his disappointment in attendance (or lack thereof) at Tropicana Field:
We’ve been playing great baseball all year. Since I’ve been here in ’06, the fans have wanted a good baseball team. They’ve wanted to watch a contender. And for us to play good baseball for three years now, and for us to be in a spot to clinch again and go to the playoffs, we’re all confused as to why it’s only 15,00 to 20,000 in the building.
He followed that up with this explanation, so as to not piss off the public… even though the truth hurts.
I’m actually just trying to rally the troops and get more people in here. It’s a tough situation for us. A lot of the visiting teams come in and wonder where are all the fans. It’s a little bit embarrassing for us. Again, we’re one game away from clinching a postseason spot. We have enough guys in this room to celebrate with, but we’d love to celebrate with the fans, too. It’s just tough to see that.
Price also later apologized via his Twitter account, saying “If I offended anyone I apologize I did not think it was gonna turn into this…”
No apology necessary, David. In my opinion, someone should have said something long ago. Maybe Rays fans will take the hike down to The Trop tonight to cheer on their team as they attempt to clinch a berth once again at 7:10pm ET when Price takes the hill against Orioles right-hander Brad Bergesen.
Update: Read more about what the Rays organization plans to do to fill the house for their team.[St. Petersburg Times]