Tag:Red Sox
Posted on: April 29, 2008 7:15 pm

Rude & Insulting Reaction to Rays Sweep


A growing number  (but not all) of Bostonian sports fans are getting some weird sense of entitlement - that the norm within the universe is that only teams from the Boston area are destined to win, and if they so lose then there is something out of whack with the universe and they seem to give little credit when due to the other prevailing team.  Ok, there are jerks everywhere.  

But when the Boston Globe publishes an article written by one of its own reporters in its sports section that SLAMS the fans of the young sports franchise, the Rays, simply for being happy when it appears that their young little franchise is getting close to a breakout year is just plain f'ck'd up, and may reflect how and why many Bostonians have such rude, arrogant, attitudes toward others.  

The Rays have only completed 10 seasons, and now its fans are being STOMPED on by a Boston Globe sports staff reporter who primarily writes a blog column to monitors Boston team franchises, including the Red Sox that is in excess of 100 years in age, with over $90,000,000 more in its bloated payroll, and who, frankly, didn't win a world series for 86 years?  Plus, he doesn't even bother to get the name of the team's home town correct, always referrning to TAMPA, rather than ST. PETERSBURG. He appears to be more like a ranting insecure aging bully looking to knock down the new neighborhood kid, and is an embarrassment.  Anyway, see this article - I think it is an embarrassment to New England sports journalists (edited for space and emphasis added for those who like to speedread): 

Sweep prognosisPosted by Eric Wilbur, Boston.com Staff April 28, 2008 12:38 PM


It is in this, their finest moment as a franchise, that we’re reminded once again just how pathetic Tampa Bay has been over the years.

We scoffed at the name change, but it apparently has made all the difference.

The Devil Rays? They were that annual bunch of losers, an also-ran in a division that demanded excellence and plenty of cash to contend. These, my friend, are the brand-new Rays, the matured offspring that has already delivered the greatest month in team history. No Devil Rays team had ever been in first place or three games above .500 this late into the season. These destined Rays, winners of six straight, accomplished the feat with a three-game sweep of the Red Sox over the weekend.

It’s April 28. The fact that this is something to be excited about comes over as kind of lame.

That’s not to say this isn’t a major turn of events as far as this franchise is concerned. The Rays are stocked with burgeoning young talent and an eye-opening pitching staff that has the second-best ERA in the American League. Their bullpen’s 2.37 ERA is the best in all of baseball. Opposing offenses are hitting just .237 against Rays pitching, the best in the AL, as the staff held Boston, which has scored more runs than anyone in the league (133), to just five runs over the weekend in Tampa’s first-ever three-game sweep of Boston.

There should be excitement. The Rays have an interesting mix on a team that is proving it might be able to contend over the next five months. It's just that based on history, it doesn’t take much to generate Rays Fever.

Nobody is exactly ready to call this past weekend a changing of the guard sequence of events by any means, but the Rays are tied for first place and it’s almost May. That's big news in Tampa, a mere footnote everywhere else. ...... .

The Rays, meanwhile, are getting top-notch starting from the likes of James Shields and remarkable relief from the once-thought washed up Troy Percival. Carlos Pena is proving that 2007 wasn’t a fluke, tied for the league lead in home runs with six, while another former Boston short-termer, Eric Hinske, is tearing it up with a .994 OPS (in 68 at-bats). Evan Longoria is going to be such a household name that we predict it’s only June by the time he wants to punch someone for another “Desperate Housewives” quip.

The Orioles, Rays, and Red Sox are all tied for first today. You tell me which one of the three is most likely to stay.

Still, keep in mind that the Rays have gone on this historic stretch without staff ace and noted Red Sox killer Scott Kazmir, who is recovering from an elbow strain, and they are proving some preseason number crunchers a bit more prophetic than, oh, the Detroit Tigers. The Sporting News’ David Pinto gave Tampa’s pitching staff a good chance of becoming the class of the AL East, which it is so far. Baseball Prospectus predicted this would be the greatest season in Tampa Bay Rays history, which, sadly, it already is.

PECOTA predicted an 88-win season for the Rays in 2008. They’re on pace for 90-91 wins right now.

That would, of course, be the aforementioned greatest season in team history, and would no doubt be in the mix for the wild card or even the AL East title depending upon how much Tampa can win consistently against the Red Sox and Yankees the rest of the season. But must we get into fantasy right now? After all, they’re dancing on the beach over an April first-place record and three games over .500.

“The Rays have had grand moments before,” writes the St. Petersburg Times’ John Romano. “Wade Boggs gave us one night. Doug Waechter gave us another. The 12-game winning streak in the middle of 2004 was the greatest collective achievement. But there has never been anything like this.”

It’s exciting all right; a young team annually destined for the dregs of the division may finally have something to play for. But when a three-games-above-.500 mark is your franchise’s crowning achievement thus far,  well, sorry that just sucks. 


See the entire article for yourself:  http://www.boston.com/sports/column


Category: MLB
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