Why Did the Rays Leave Their “Irish” Roots at Home

Come on Tampa Bay Rays. I know you got it in you to be festive, celebratory and even have a few Irish brethren among your midst ( Shawn O’Malley ), but sporting a green Phiten titanium necklace in honor of St. Patrick’s Day is a wee bit disappointing.

Maybe I have seen better Irish intentions out of this crew that would dance an Irish jig at a hat’s toss if it gave them the luck and pathway deep into the post season. But to only wear a necklace and not even the famed “TB” caps brought back on March 17, 2010……I’m a bit ashamed tonight. Might have to drown my sorrows in a bit more Corned Beef and Green concoctions.

I mean even your opponent, the Pittsburgh Pirates manned the green cap for this special day. And that cap did look really out-of-place with their usual golden-yellow and black ensemble, but their celebration of this holiday was noted all the way back to the Irish boroughs of the Steel City where the green bottle of Pa brew Rolling Rock helps marks the day.

Heck, even the usually mundane San Francisco Giants who also sported dark uniforms today showed support for the Irish in all of us this solemn day. But alas, the Rays wore a necklace.

It has only been 5 Springs since the Rays dumped their forest green unis and began their immersion into the blue realm. For years just sporting the Rays Batting Practice jersey had you at least in the “green scheme” of things on this March 17th day, but now it has eroded to just a bob of jewelry that might not even have any physical properties to it.

This same Rays team sported Kelly green uniforms not so long ago for charity that made you push your sunglasses down for their brilliance not only in color, but as a charity auction item gleamed throughout the region.

I still remember bidding on those classic uniforms and sporting them at least twice at Rays games and people marveled at their color and wanted one for their own. But they were keepsakes, special editions, once-in-a-lifetime reminders of the one day the Rays truly sported the green for themselves and others.

So as I sit upon this wooden bar stool among a throng of sports fans celebrating this great day I am reminded that every color, creed and national origin for this 24 hour period can boast Irish roots. That even the Reuben sandwich that contains Swiss cheese, Russian dressing, German Sauerkraut, but Irish Corned Beef is a 100% Irish staple today.

Maybe I’m the only person who feels the Rays made a titanic mistake today by only sporting a commercially sold jewelry accessory when so much more could have been concocted and projected for sale to the Rays Republic on this great holiday.

I think if you did a tally of just the 1-day (March 17th) sales on just the daily sales of the Phillies, Mets and Red Sox just today when all three squads donned their festive green field of clover colored caps and ceremonial uniforms, you would find a huge spike in merchandise sales due to the once a year green theme.

Maybe I am bit a bit melodramatic that the Rays did not at least sport a Kelly green cap much like so many other of their MLB brethren on this festive holiday. But I do wish the Rays the “luck of the Irish” all season long. A season that I pray this team always has the wind at their backs, and the road that comes to meet them is paved with victories, celebrations and bonds of brotherhood and friendship.

But then again with my original birth last name of Holiday……I feel Irish 24/7/365 even before I don my spiffy circa Rays 2010 white clover-leafed green St. Patrick’s Day cap while downing a stout and a shot of Jameson. But I do truly feel the Rays today left a bit of Irish luck upon the green grass in Bradenton where even Pirates sported green hues on this festive day.

Pssst! At least MLB.com has some Rays St. Patrick’s Day gear for sale now at a 20% discount. Here is the link for the Rays selections. All 30 MLB teams have their own section. 


I personally am not a big fan of the Green uniforms or Green hats. Kinda throws off things in a way

I can understand that totally. I know your own team has such a great tradition of Dodger Blue it might taint the image a bit. But the Rays have embraced the St Patrick’s Day holiday before, and I think it is great not only for team merchandise sales, but gives this community another rallying point as we solidify our fan base. People forget we have only been in the MLB for 15 years this season while so many other franchise have over 50-100 years of traditions and affiliations with holidays.

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