I am SO Sorry Tampa Bay

I have to admit something here to all of you Rays fans. I am getting sick and tired of carrying all of this guilt and singular pressure of knowing this unknown secret to all of you, and the pure fact of not telling everyone or anyone is eating me up raw and twisting me up like a large salty pretzel. This burning secret is churning inside to a point of internal implosion and shriveling up my soul to resemble a sun-rotted prune just waiting for the hot sun to take all of my  exterior substance away and bare me again to my bones for the world to see me again.

You know someone has to be at fault for all this 2009 Rays pain and anquish, but I still hid it from all of your eyes and left it just inches beyond your fingers, and yet I clutche it internally for so long some can no longer look into my eyes and see that I forgot  who I was this season, that something was missing within my spirit and emotions this season. So why don’t all of you Rays fans go ahead and blame me for this subpar season. That is right, you have been leering and jeering seeking and searching for the perfect scapegoat, and yet here I was in plain sight and maybe even standing next to you.

And I am  totally willing to take the blunt beating of words and the constant barrage of hateful comments. Bring it on, for I know someone has to be the bold one and take that honorable fall on the blade of the sword. Someone has to think for the people and make a  unselfish sacrifice for the forgiveness of the masses, and it might as well be me for my ignoring my own code of superstitions and rites. 

I am willing to take this one square on the  bottom of my chin for the gross oversight, get kicked merciless again and again in my red and swollen shins by the scores of little kids looking for a solid plausable reason for the Rays to maybe heading home in October then making a few road trips to defend their title.  And I am fully aware as I walked the hallowed and busy halls of this stadium on Sunday, I will get physically abused and smacked around like a cotton ragdoll by little old ladies with huge purses full of quarters and nickels.

I deserve all the profane remarks and the steely eyed leers and constant barrage of jeers and trash thrown at me in my seat. So go ahead and just loathe me for it all before 1:40 pm today so we can all just sit down and enjoy the ballgame.  And in that 2-3 hour moment of reflection let your bitter and coarse comment fester for after the game will be anothe chance to spite me. Then afterwards as I file out of the backdoors of the Trop., you can again begin the verbal barrage and continue the fire and brimstone massage to my body. I am not worthy right now, because someone has to blame for all of this. Someone has to take the  bitter blame, because the Rays is still fighting day in and day out.

And you may ask why I am to blame. What arrogant act or even attempt at normalcy did I forget to deserve such treatment?  Well, it is really quite simple. I may have committed the mortal sin of slacking a bit this season, and it might have been my lackluster attitude at times that led the team down the wrong road. When I cracked my large Latin Percussion cowbell in April, I did not go straight out and buy a new one, but settled for a small model given out  during the “Championship Week” during the first week of the season. And I have forgotten it on numerous occasions, so my bell did not ring loud and true and might have caused discomfort within the dugout for it distrurbed the vibes going through the Trop.

For in this bitter end, my simple omission might have been a psuedo bad karma accelerator of all of this Rays fans nonsense of extreme playoff  misery and worry about hitting a solid piece of ground in the American League postseason. My own decision of staying in the shadows and hiding in the background this season might have been a catalyst for the impending dismal disaster. For my personal trip towards the darkened world of introversion might have tipped the scales to the wrong direction, and I might have done a unknown karma whammy strike towards anything normal right now again for the Rays.

If you are wondering what my mortal sin could entail, it is a simple case of forgetting to again reserve a slot and perfect spot in the 2009 Tampa Bay Rays Team Photo. I got in the 2008 edition last May and the team began a string of walk-off victories and an instant upward spiraling trend towards the postseason. For beyond all the good karma and the energetic chemistry going on last season in that clubhouse, a simple smile fan nestled between Akinora Iwamura and Willy Ayar could have been the push of odd luck they needed.

For I am “Mr. Lucky”, or that is the name the Rays gave me back 5 years ago when they inducted me on their Rays/Pepsi Fan Wall of Fame. I want to think I was the unseen good luck charm that pushed them towards that ultimate goal of reaching the World Series. I want to think I had a small bit of primal inspiration to bottled a little bit up for all the fans here and all over the world who follow the team and hide it within the ranks and rows of that photo session. I want to think my luck rubbed off on all of them as a group. I mean on that day I did step on Evan Longoria’s foot as I came out of the second row so they could take the official Team Photo.

And we all know what that did for him………Rookie of the Year baby!  So I am opening myself to be the official Rays scapegoat for 2009. Blame me, just do not blame anyone else for all the misery you are feeling right now towards the Tampa Bay Rays. For I might be the twisting metal in between this multi car pile-up that flavors the bitter taste in your mouth with a hints of  good and bad that have engulped and turned the day into night for this team in the 2009 season.

So I will take the garbage reeking around my seat, and the odd soda cup floating towards my head because my actions might have angered the almighty Baseball Gods, and they do not take kindly to playing with their superstitions and game rites. And believe me when I tell you I have gone to the Church of Baseball a lot the last few weeks of this season hoping and praying for my own salvation or absolution in this matter.  I have asked forgiveness at the alter of the Splendid Splinter inside Tropicana Field.

I have seen the Phillie shroud of the late Tug McGraw hanging in the Major League Baseball Alumni Association office and I have seen a vision of green grass on its shirt tails calling me again. I have stood in the rotunda and looked skyward and said a silent plead for some sign or omen that all will again be great within these Trop walls, and all I got was a ray of sunshine beaming on the people coming into the stadium and nothing near myself. I have even asked the symbol of all that is good and gracious in the Rays, their mascot Raymond D Rays for wisdom and a path of light in these ever-changing hours of playoff darkness.

So do not blame the Rays players, the Rays Coaches or even the Rays front office or ownership. It was my spiteful woes and selfishness that started this boulder down the hill with no one ther to stop it in time. It is in errors and transgressions within my total being that this season should fall upon my shoulders and shall wreck hovoc on my eternal soul. For I am a Rays fan who know the  miserable plight and the sheer agony of impending losses all to well for the last 10 years. And I have also tasted the ambrosia and joy mixed with extreme excitement of shared victories.  But it also falls upon me forgetting my  simple place in this cosmic soup that might eventaully be the first crack in the ice above our feet.

And for that I ask your forgiveness and proclaim to you now that in 2010, I will do everything in my physical and financial being to again smile proudly and confidently standing amongst the Rays who will again fight between the white chalk lines every day for all of us. My shoulders are wide and can take the weight of this challenge. And I am able to stand tall and proud and with no teetering in my balance in this fight until the Rays ship is righted and on course, and all is again serene in the Rays World.


Cliff – the Rays do NOT have a bigger fan that you!!!! You will NOT take any blame for the season they are having; I will stand for you saying that!!!! Got it?? :-)

And congrats on being #10 on the Latest Leader’s List!


someone has to take the blame for the implosions and the dismal sights on the field.
I am not afraid of taking it all on my shoulders.
Easy as pie.
The players are doing their part ( for the most part), just things have been derailed by a single pebble on the track at times.
There are better fans, and there are people who do not get cuaght up in all of this doodoo who will sleep at night, as I peg away on this laptop.
Notice, it is 3:26 am (lol)

Rays Renegade


To me it is not about the numbers.
Would love more numbers in the “W” column, but so do all of us right now.
Rays bloggers’ are increasing in numbers, which is a great thing.
Best thing about 2009 so far, it is our second best season EVEr as a franchise.
So it is a double-edged sword.

Rays Renegade



You are their number 1 fan, and you are the reason they have such a strong fan-base.

Guys like you are loyal and compassionate about their team

that have an effect on other’s who seem to follow along with you.

It creates a never ending chain of Rays followers and Rays blogger’s.

You started the trend Cliff!

You are the number 1 dude.

And I gotta agree You are “Mr Lucky!”



I know the song well.
Had it on cassette tape when it came out.
I just hate that everyone is throwing blame at certain players or events like throwing darts at a dartboard.
I have no problem taking blame or even basking in the limelight, but frustrations are mounting, and i am trying to hrad of a volcanic eruption of emotions by Rays fans.

Rays Renegade


You’re ten times the fan of anyone I’ve known.
Just the fact that you are willing to accept blame for this and you are pulling for your team…would anyone else do that?
Don’t give up yet. The Red Sox could have a meltdown, though it looks like they won’t, and you’re not trying ridiculously hard to avoid the second-WORST season in franchise history.
And the theme of this entry reflects another song, too, I believe: the parallels to Styx’s Mr. Roboto are definitely there: hiding in the shadows but standing out, having emotions and keeping secrets…plus, I bet if you listen to it you’ll feel a little better.

You are a true fan. If you were a Dodger fan, you would bleed blue. Do Rays fans bleed blue too? You have been such a support to me this season and I thank you for that. There is still an uphill battle for the Dodgers. I think that Kuroda’s accident made me realize what is most important. And I keep reminding myself that baseball is a game. There is always next year. You also remind me that we all are baseball fans, we each just have a favorite team. We can support other teams without loviing our own team less.

I am not sure if we bleed sunshine or a ray of light yet if you split us in half.
But we do not bleed the same shade of blue.
That is one of the hidden gems of this site that people overlook. Fans can come together in a collective ball over events and tragedies of this game and unite as one.
It doesn’t matter if you wear pinstripes, a compass, or even a ray on your jersey, we are all a prt of the MLb family.

Rays Renegade


You want me to keep the faith…what about you? This post seems to be a white flag in itself. I will not blame you for what the guys have not done. I just wonder if you have given up on the team…even if only in your heart. You always tell me to believe in them until the bitter end. Time to heed your own advice. Don’t give up on the guys or your ability to stand by them.

Top ten man. good pic of garza up there too. my good friend looks exactly like him and we always rag on him for it. not really rag on because hes a pretty good looking guy.


People have missed the idea here real good.
I am lending myself to be the scapegoat so the team can be left alone.
Believe me, I am not giving up my seat or my place near the field.
But the constant wavering of blaming this guy this day, and that one another is only diluting the soup of this season’s problems.

Rays Renegade


You can call a guy good looking and not get in trouble.
10 years ago, might have been a different story.
Garza is a pretty hyped-up guy, but has a good vibe about him.
Was fun watching him on the “Dance, Dance Revolution” game at the Gameworks party. He lost one game to a guy in the crowd who looks like Bill Murray. lol

Rays Renegade


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