The Tampa Bay Rays just sent the Oakland A’s out of the playoffs after a 5-1 victory in the AL Wild Card game and will now take on the big bad Houston Astros.
Rays first baseman, Yandy Diaz punched two homers into the parking lot and Tampa Bay advances to the ALDS.
The Rays have spent $63 million on their roster in 2019 which is dead last in the sport.
This has now given people the green light to applaud the Rays front office for their savvy and cunning. Their ability to maneuver without spending a deal. Acquiring cheap underrated/undervalued talent while the bitch ass Boston Red Sox have the highest payroll in the game and barely managed to finish above .500.
The trade this team made with the Pittsburgh Pirates may go down as one of the biggest heists in MLB history. Tampa Bay sent Archer and his busted arm to Pittsburgh for Austin Meadows, who is now the best player on their team and Tyler Glasnow, one of the best starting pitchers in the AL.
Moves like that deserve a golf clap. Any time you exchange a depreciating asset for top young cheap talent, you succeeded as a front office.
But there’s one word in there that is destroying the league: cheap.
I understand the desire to root for the ‘underdog’ Rays against the evil New York Yankees and their exorbitant annual payrolls. The Yankees buy championships and blah blah.
People think the Yankees buying all of the best players is bad for baseball but honestly, it’s the ‘small market’ teams that are ruining the league. It’s the teams like Kansas City, Baltimore and Miami that are the problem.
It’s insane to me that we can all collectively dunk on Mark Zuckerberg for being a power hungry money obsessed sociopath threatening to fight Lizzy Warren if she took away a penny from his pocket yet for some inexplicable reason, we celebrate and champion sports owners for refusing to spend money.
What are we doing here?
Ah yes, Stuart Sternberg is so brilliant!!
Love the way that this Wall Street investor worth $800 million, bought the team in 2005 and proceeded to put absolutely no financial effort into winning championships.
He did what so many dumb shitty rich people do. He bought something expansive because he knew that only 29 other people on Earth had one and he could be the coolest amongst his rich friends because he can brag about owning a sports franchise.
Now, the obvious rebuttal is pointing out that the Rays lose money every year due to their atrocious attendance numbers.
You know how to get fans to come see your team play live at the ballpark? And look at me. I cannot stress this enough. Win. Games.
Why would you go see the Rays and get to know all of the best players when you know once they are eligible to hit free agency and make real money, the Rays front office is going to leave their texts on read.
One could imagine Rays fans weren’t super excited to watch David Price dominate in the World Series for the Red Sox last summer when he could’ve been a Ray for life had Tampa Bay just delivered him a bag.
Congrats to Ben Zobrist and Big Games James Shields, two former Rays that both had success elsewhere and made it to the World Series as Tampa Bay finds new minor leaguers to plug and play for minimum wage.
If the Rays were competing for the World Series every season then people would show up to games more frequently. It’s literally that simple. You have to spend money to make money.
Enough stroking the Rays for refusing to cut checks to players. The Yankees and Dodgers give the best players in baseball the contracts they deserve. They are not the bad guys in all this.
And I don’t want to hear about the Rays ‘small market’ bullshit. The San Diego Padres weren’t close to competing for a title and they still gave Manny Machado a 10-year $300 million deal.
The Padres attendance went up from 26,000 a game in 2018 to 29,000 this season and they only won 70 games. Wait until they get a pitching staff together. People will come to the ballpark if you have stars and you win.
The Rays have no stars and often lose and are like ‘WHY WON’T PEOPLE COME TO THIS (awful looking and structurally despicable) ballpark.
In 2019, the 1% no longer get a pat on the back for hoarding all the money and not paying employees better wages. Fuck that.
Stop allowing sports owners to get away with not caring about winning.
If you’re not willing to spend the money then sell the team and let someone purchase it who will actually sign superstars.
Stop allowing owners to blame the market size for their own cheap nonsense. The New York Mets pretend like they’re a small market as if they’re not in fucking NEW YORK.
Don’t let them put the onus on us, the fans, for not attending games. That’s victim blaming.
You want us to come to the stadium and buy $20 sodas? Sign. Stars.
Pay players what they deserve.
The Rays are not heroes. They’re assholes.
This season’s success is an outlier but chances are, it will inspire more front offices to close their checkbooks up and look for AAA guys earning less money than the bus drivers bringing them to the stadium.
And the more that teams refuse to pay players, the more the top players end up on the same roster which means there will be far more trash teams and there are already way too many.
And to extrapolate even further, kids coming up won’t be encouraged to pursue baseball as a career.
Kyler Murray already chose the NFL over baseball knowing damn well he’d make more if he signed with the Oakland A’s but he wanted the notoriety of playing football.
Major League Baseball clearly can’t offer fame to new players anymore.
The days of Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez being the biggest stars in sports are long gone.
So if MLB can’t provide celebrity and now they can’t even promise riches then why would a kid choose baseball over any other sport? The love of the game? Laugh out loud.
Fuck the Rays.