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Rays owner Stuart Sternberg wants Shovels and Rope to play the Trop; they hit the State Theatre next week

Shovels and Rope
Shovels and Rope
Published Mar. 30, 2017

Every spring training, the Times asks Tampa Bay Rays owner Stuart Sternberg which bands and singers he'd like to see perform postgame concerts at Tropicana Field. Over the years, he's tossed out names like Leonard Cohen, Van Morrison, Darlene Love, Bob Dylan and the Decemberists. Longshots, yes, but when you're a Major League owner and massive music fan, you never know.

This year, Sternberg's three postgame concert dreams for 2017 are perennial picks Tom Waits and My Morning Jacket's Jim James, along with South Carolina alt-folk duo Shovels and Rope.

Well, guess what? Opening Day is coming next week, and Sternberg might have an opportunity to get his wish.

Shovels and Rope are playing the State Theatre in St. Petersburg on Tuesday, the same night the Rays play the New York Yankees just up the street at the Trop. Tickets to the concert are $19 and up. Click here for info.

Obviously, Sternberg's got a conflict here: Do I watch the Major League Baseball team I own take on the Yankees, or do I sneak out to catch a rock show? We've all been there.

But maybe there's a way Sternberg can combine his two loves. A postgame concert is out of the question, but maybe Shovels and Rope could pop over to the Trop for batting practice, the National Anthem or first pitch; or maybe just to watch a couple of innings from the owner's box. Or Sternberg might decide to pop out of the game early and head down the road to catch the end of Shovels and Rope's show at the State. If you see him there, please snap a photo and tweet it our way.

For more music talk from Sternberg -- including thoughts on Bruce Springsteen, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Richard Lewis, Dave Chappelle and his must-see TV -- click here for Marc Topkin's interview.

-- Jay Cridlin