Jeff Passan isn’t incorrect that football’s dominance in Florida has badly damaged home attendance for the Tampa Bay Rays.
But their hideous home field environment does them no good either, especially since most of their games are played before the gridiron gears up:
“The Rays walked into an ambush. The idea of having a Major League Baseball team in Tampa-St. Pete was attractive. The reality was very different: Football is so prevalent, so overwhelmingly popular, that they never had a chance to succeed.”
That a team with one World Series title already to its name and could own the best record in baseball this year is set to give away more than 20,000 tickets for tonight’s game speaks to something deeper than all this.