Silverman's real business message seems pretty clear to me. It was a once-in-a-lifetime season we can all enjoy. Let's hope that "magic continues," as he put it, as we approach the 2009 season. But the longer-term success of the Rays franchise -- the business of owning a baseball team -- will depend not only on the Rays attracting a more committed fan base from a broader geographic area. It will require the Tampa Bay area to embrace itself as a more unified business region. The other 29 Major League Baseball teams operate in 26 markets, and each one considers itself a single metropolitan entity. Can that happen here?
Unfortunately, attendance is probably going to be a bigger story to most than the Rays, but if you can't knock the team, knock the fans, or the stadium, or whatever else. Haters will always find something.
A few days old, but Gordon Edes on the Rays off-season.
The talented Mr. Kalkman explains how the Rays get the most for their money.
Rich Lederer on baseball media.