Friday, July 20, 2018
News Roundup

News at noon: John Oliver vs. Donald Trump; Osama bin Laden's will; Seminole gambling compact; Stu Sternberg; Strawberry Festival

Opponents of GOP frontrunner Donald Trump are fired up this week over a rant by John Oliver, who spent 21 minutes pillorying the brash billionaire on his HBO show "Last Week Tonight." In the screed, Oliver references our Pulitzer Prize winning website PolitiFact and mentions Trump Tower Tampa that never materialized.

In his handwritten will, al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden claimed he had about $29 million in personal wealth — the bulk of which he wanted to be used "on jihad, for the sake of Allah." The will was released in a batch of more than 100 documents seized in a May 2011 raid that killed bin Laden at his compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

Mired by the prospect of uncertain court rulings and constant infighting by an aggressive industry, the Florida Senate signaled Tuesday that efforts to rewrite the state's gambling bills and ratify a gaming agreement with the Seminole Tribe may be dead for the session.

Dr. John Armstrong's confirmation as state surgeon general has again been postponed after the Gov. Rick Scott appointee didn't have enough support in a Senate panel. And he may not get another shot.

During a rare panel conversation, Bucs owner Bryan Glazer, Rays owner Stu Sternberg and Lightning owner Jeff Vinik shared a message: Good seasons and bad seasons happen. Taxpayer money for improved stadiums and arenas may be called for on occasion. But each team wants to be a long-term contributor to improving the Tampa Bay community. And, of course, added Sternberg: "We all want to win."

An estate in Odessa owned by a notorious Ponzi schemer and former Republican bigwig might well have been the short sale deal of the decade. Not only did buyers get the 8,000 square foot lake front home for the bargain price of $1.1 million, the sellers didn't have to pay the nearly $4 million they still owed two lenders.

Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg gave a state of the franchise address today in Port Charlotte, saying he is confident the team is improved over last year but acknowledging that the level of competition in the AL East is greater.

The Florida Strawberry Festival has a special place in the hearts of the Band Perry. It's where singer Kimberly Perry met her future husband, major league catcher J.P. Arencibia. "He was in spring training," said bassist Reid Perry, Kimberly's brother. "He knew a couple of guys at the radio station there in Tampa, and they actually brought him to a meet-and-greet. None of us knew exactly why he was there, other than he was a baseball player and he knew the radio guys. But a couple of months later, it came out that he was there to meet Kimberly." As festival tales go, that one's hard to top. No wonder it happened at the down-home, low-key Strawberry Festival, which kicks off its 81st year of shortcake and country music Thursday.

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Rays journal: Replacement catcher Adam Moore ready to play

Rays journal: Replacement catcher Adam Moore ready to play

ST. PETERSBURG — The newest Rays player is also nearly the oldest.With All-Star C Wilson Ramos on the disabled list with a hamstring injury, Tampa Bay turned to veteran Adam Moore, 34, as the new backup catcher behind Jesus Sucre. Only reliever...
Updated: 3 minutes ago
Martin Fennelly: Rays and Marlins at different stages of same mission

Martin Fennelly: Rays and Marlins at different stages of same mission

ST. PETERSBURG — New York Yankees god and former Tampa resident Derek Jeter, who was once going to save the Rays (or so we thought), was at Tropicana Field on Friday night. The Captain had the gall to show up as Miami Marlins chief executive of...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Dolphins owner: Actually, we haven’t decided whether to levy anthem penalties

Dolphins owner: Actually, we haven’t decided whether to levy anthem penalties

Times wiresThe NFL can't seem to get away from the divisive national anthem issue.The latest developments this week assure that, despite the league's wishes, the debate about how to handle players who kneel during the anthem to protest police violenc...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Late rally falls short as Rays lose to Marlins, 6-5

Late rally falls short as Rays lose to Marlins, 6-5

ST. PETERSBURG –The Rays rallied for four runs in the bottom of the ninth Friday night, but their rally came up short as the Marlins held on for a 6-5 win at Tropicana Field.Tampa Bay's bullpen gave up five runs in the seventh, and that was too...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Kiermaier has ‘severe bone bruise’ in foot, dates back to April injury

Kiermaier has ‘severe bone bruise’ in foot, dates back to April injury

Rays outfielder Kevin Kiermaier left Friday's game in the fifth inning when an injury to his right foot that has bothered him since April flared up with the worst pain he's encountered this season.Kiermaier called the injury a "severe bone bruise" an...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Greg Auman’s takeaways from Friday’s Rays-Marlins game

Greg Auman’s takeaways from Friday’s Rays-Marlins game

Nathan Eovaldi bounced back nicely following an eight-out, eight-run outing last week vs. the Twins. He lasted six innings, gave up one run and struck out eight. Take away the Twins game and Eovaldi has allowed three earned runs in his past four star...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Shooting outside McDonald’s in South Tampa leaves man in critical condition

Shooting outside McDonald’s in South Tampa leaves man in critical condition

TAMPA — Tampa police are investigating a shooting that occurred Friday night at a McDonald’s restaurant at 3515 S Dale Mabry Highway.Police responded around 7:30 p.m. after a man was shot around a dark grey Dodge Charger in the back corner of the res...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Pasco sheriff: Woman faked kidnapping attempt on her daughter to frame former business partner

Pasco sheriff: Woman faked kidnapping attempt on her daughter to frame former business partner

HOLIDAY — The mother of a 12-year-old girl was arrested Thursday after authorities said she faked a kidnapping attempt on her daughter in an effort to frame a former business partner.After the mother was taken into custody, detectives said she tried ...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Sheriff’s Office warns of IRS phone scams in Pinellas County

Sheriff’s Office warns of IRS phone scams in Pinellas County

Beware of callers saying they’re with the IRS and demanding payments, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office warned Friday.According to a news release from the agency, scammers have been phoning residents across the county this week and trying to trick...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Rays’ Kevin Kiermaier leaves game with foot discomfort

Rays’ Kevin Kiermaier leaves game with foot discomfort

Rays outfielder Kevin Kiermaier, who missed two months earlier this season with a thumb injury, left Friday night's game against the Marlins with what the team described as "right foot discomfort."It wasn't immediately clear when the injury occurred,...
Updated: 3 hours ago