Spring Training: Shea Stadium Sucks. Dave Raymond and Brett Dolan Too.

Okay, I’ve got a note for Dave Raymond and Brett Dolan. Dudes, it is the Tampa Bay area, and the city of Tampa happens to be a part of that area. So when a team is named the Tampa Bay Rays, it is not the Tampa Rays. And when that team plays its game in the St. Petersburg, there is nothing funny about that because St. Petersburg is part of the Tampa Bay area.

Tampa Bay is like the Bay Area in California, and it exists of many different cities and towns. So if the folks of the Tampa Bay area want to build a stadium in St. Petersburg, then there’s nothing wrong with a team named Tampa Bay playing its home games there.

If the owner of the Rays were to want change its name to the Tampa Rays, then there would be a slight problem with the team playing in St. Petersburg. But that’s simply not the case here. And I know this is only spring training, but could you guys find something else to talk about during the game besides the Rays playing St. Petersburg?

If you really need something to do, how about teaching Milo Hamilton how to pronounce Miguel Tejada’s name? Or giving him some new stories to tell, something that’s not from 1940.

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I know, I’m asking for too much from the broadcasters. And it’s a stupid thing to harp on, but it’s really bugging me. And I really don’t want to listen to this nonsense when the Astros return to Tampa Bay during the regular season.

Now for a few random notes…

Here’s a real shocker. Moises Alou is injured and will miss the start of the season. I don’t know about you, but I sure never saw that coming.

Jesse Levis, a former backup catcher with the Milwaukee Brewers and Cleveland Indians, who’s just beginning his second year as a scout for the Boston Red Sox, was arrested the other night when two under-16-year-old girls, and two adult women, reported seeing him masturbating. The witnesses were all down at the pool, and they were able to see him through the window into his hotel room.

And somebody is asking for memories of Shea Stadium. I’ve got one. The place is dump. Tear it down. And the sooner the better. Really, the place is awful. I’ll go anywhere to see a baseball game – hell, I sat through an extra inning night game at Candlestick one night (the most miserable experience I have ever had, though it was very good game) – but despite all of the bright paint they slap on the seats at Shea, the place is an old dump. The seats are crowded, even if there’s not a crowd. The corridors are tight, and dark. And there’s the fact that the stadium is located under the flight path to LaGuardia.

So I don’t have any fond memories. And while I hate to see old parks demolished and replaced by new pleasure palaces like MMP where baseball is an afterthought, I’ve got to state that Shea does need to go. – John Royal

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