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July 01, 2008
by Robbie Gillies
Let's start with this; everyone knows Red Sox fans are obnoxious. Yes, there are exceptions, but come on. I've seen so many fresh Celtics t-shirts and bumper stickers which clearly were not there over the past 10 years. I've seen more Red Sox hats in the past four years than the rest of my life combined. Boston has seen a huge rise in bandwagon fans. But, hey, at least they have fans.
The Rays are in 1st place in the AL East and are facing their "rivals", the Boston Red Sox, in a 3-game series that began yesterday. The quotes seem necessary because it's too early to call this a rivalry but, there has always been bad blood between these two teams including a brawl followed by multiple suspensions last time they played each other. Despite this intriguing match-up, the stadium was only about 80% full. Just over 34,000 people filled Tropicana Field and I bet half of those were Red Sox fans. Sure, there were some enthusiastic fans, but the Rays still rank second to last in average attendance in the American League.
If the fans won't come out and support the best team in the American League when they are facing their biggest rivals, why would anyone think a new stadium will solve anything? There is optimism though. Their attendance has increased in each of the past four seasons. And the proposed stadium does look pretty cool.