Shouldn’t Rays Fans Love the Dodgers?

A quick look at Dodgers/Rays history over the last few years… what team is constantly in the lead here?

1/14/06: Dodgers trade Edwin Jackson & Chuck Tiffany for Danys Baez and Lance Carter. Jackson was worth 3.1 wins in Tampa and was just traded to the Tigers for Matt Joyce, who hit 12 homers in 277 PA in his first taste of the bigs. Baez and Carter combined for just half a win as Dodgers. Good work on that one!

6/27/06: Dodgers trade Dioner Navarro, Jae Seo, and Justin Ruggiano for Toby Hall and Mark Hendrickson. The three players sent to Tampa have been worth 4 wins (mostly Navarro, who’s still just 25 and one of the better young catchers in the AL), while Hall had just 57 at-bats in blue, and Hendrickson contributed 197 well below-average innings before leaving as a free agent. Besides, Ruggiano is the 174th best Ray in historyAnother solid deal!

7/31/06: Dodgers trade Joel Guzman and Sergio Pedroza for Julio Lugo. Actually, this was Disaster City on all sides. While Lugo was awful in LA (wow, 41 OPS+? Was he really that bad?) he at least gave us two draft picks, while Guzman washed out of AAA Durham, and Pedroza just lost 200 points of OPS after being moved from A to AA this year. Okay, let’s forget this one ever happened on both sides.

Dodgers leave Vero Beach to the Rays. Yeah, I know that the Rays ended up moving their minor league franchise for 2009 anyway, but that’s their decision – the point is, the last games
 played in Dodgertown to this point were not Dodger games; they were Rays games.

2005-3-19-canseco-1-copy.jpgMost recent head to head series?
 Tampa 2, Dodgers 1 (2007)

We go through this Rays-tilted history for a reason… what do Rays fans, like at RaysProspects, have against the Dodgers?

Rays vs. Dodgers

Per Marc Lancaster: The fact the Rays stumbled into a perfect sales pitch for new fans by reaching the World Series just before the transition made it all the better. Demand for Grapefruit League tickets has been high, with reserved seats for every game in Port Charlotte sold out by Jan. 15 and about 3,000 season tickets sold overall.

The Rays “were blown away,” said Charlotte County Commission Chairman Tricia Duffy. “The response from our community has been unbelievable.”

Per Dylan Hernandez:

The Dodgers anticipated a financial windfall by moving their preseason home from Vero Beach, Fla. to Arizona, thousands of miles closer to the vast majority of their fans and to a sparkling new training complex expected to attract the attention of deep-pocketed corporate sponsorship. It hasn’t worked out that way.

The Dodgers, who open camp Saturday, had a goal of selling 4,000 season tickets for spring training but will probably sell about half of that, chief operating officer Dennis Mannion said. 

Offered with no other commentary. And the point of this is… that fans that ignored their team since day one, including much of last year when they were one of the most exciting young teams in baseball, will suddenly jump on the bandwagon after going to the World Series? Oh sure. That has a lot to do with the Dodgers selling their (admittedly overpriced) spring training tickets.