Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rays' Sternberg relishing playoff atmosphere, conflicted fans

NEW YORK — Principal owner Stuart Sternberg has his own personal, peculiar and rather pointed way of measuring the progress the Rays have made.

"What's happening this weekend is we have a lot of Red Sox fans rooting for the Yankees," he said Friday. "I just want to be there with the Red Sox fans when they cheer Jeter on, and A-Rod and their former (player) Damon and Giambi and the whole crew. All the guys that they 'love' all year long, year after year, they sit there and root for them to get hits and strikeouts and all that good stuff. …

"I've been waiting two months for this weekend, and here we are. … That's what the whole weekend's about for me. That's my version of gloating. Next we're going to go on to Mideast peace and global warming and all the important things, and the presidential election. But we're starting with this, which I think is a pretty big issue."

Sternberg said the series against the Red Sox "felt like playoff baseball," and he couldn't have enjoyed it — as a fan and as an owner — more, especially with how it turned out, winning the last two games in their final at-bat. And then he heard from more people after those two games than at any other time.

"You can't ask for more," he said, then did.

The season, Sternberg said, "seems real, but it seems extraordinarily unlikely." He noted how the Rays "didn't go on one of these 19 of 22 runs to get there," and how their success had been building all year, but also how they knew how tough the stretch of 12 games against the Jays, Red Sox and Yankees — "the so-called gauntlet" — would be.

"To go up to Boston and respond was just one more indication," he said. "So it seems real and we're just asking for more from everybody."

Sternberg will be at the Trop on Monday, to address "St. Pete-type of issues" such as the stadium situation and other "good stuff." Same with the question of what — now — it would take for him to consider the season a success.

"A few things have to happen," he said. "As far as the team itself goes, you just keep going and keep winning. It's great, it's fine, we want more."

Rays' Sternberg relishing playoff atmosphere, conflicted fans 09/13/08 [Last modified: Monday, September 15, 2008 3:41pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Bucs Roberto Aguayo kicks off 2017 on the wrong foot


    The goal posts still seem to be moving for Roberto Aguayo.

    The Bucs woebegone place-kicker, who is in a battle with veteran Nick Folk, went 1-for-4 in field goal tries from 35-40 yards Tuesday on a set of narrow uprights, the first day of full squad Organized Team Activities.

    If that weren’t …

  2. Rays morning after: Are cold bats a sign of things to come?


    How does an offense that has ranked among the most productive in the league for seven weeks go so cold?

  3. Calvary Christian takes strong lineup, defense to state baseball tournament


    CLEARWATER — No matter what happens in Friday's Class 4A state semifinal against Delray Beach American Heritage, Calvary Christian has already had a historic season. The unbeaten Warriors have won 28 games and qualified for the school's first state baseball tournament.

    The addition of Nolan Hudi to the rotation made a difference, said Calvary Christian coach Greg Olsen. “It was huge.”
  4. Former Buc Mike Glennon says right things about Bears QB situation


    Mike Glennon's go-to line about being recognized around town since becoming a Bear worked as well as ever, producing laughs.

    Quarterback Mike Glennon, shown last season with the Bucs before signing in the offseason with the Bears, is showing good humor about a looming competition in Chicago. [WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times]