The holiday season is upon us, filled with good food, good drinks, and awkward conversations with family members that you haven’t seen for years. We’re here to help you get out of some of those conversations and onto your third helping of delicious food.
If you are reading and/or commenting on this website, then you are probably a Rays fan. You love the "analysis" that the writers provide, and the "in-depth discussions" with the other fans in the comment section. When Cousin Larry hears that you are a Rays fan from your Cousin Barry, he exclaims "ME TOO!" and suddenly is sitting a little too close for comfort next to you on the living room couch, and wanting to talk Rays baseball!
At first you are excited, but then you realize that you are going to struggle more getting out of this conversation than you did getting up from the table after eating your weight in turkey. You are also feeling very sleepy because football is boring, and you would rather pass out than hear Cousin Larry complain about how the Rays should trade Rene Rivera for
Mike Trout Blake Swihart.
Here are five questions that your family is likely to ask you over Thanksgiving dinner.
When are the Rays moving to Montreal?
Unless the City of St. Pete lets the Rays break their lease and look anywhere in the country/Canada, the Rays are stuck at Tropicana Field until 2028. Right now the city and the Rays are in "negotiations" to let the team look in Hillsborough County, but until an agreement is reached, they are stuck.
Why do the Rays always trade my favorite player?!
BECAUSE YOU DON’T GO TO THE GAMES!
That’s just part of the Rays’ way. They don’t generate a lot of revenue, and need to have a smaller budget than other teams. That’s why they can’t afford to sign big contracts to big free agents either. Yeah, sure, we signed Asdrubal Cabrera last year, but he signed with us because he wanted to build up his value and sign a BIGGER deal next year.
The Rays also trade players at their highest value and at a point where they can expect a good return in prospects or other MLB ready players. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.
Why don’t the Rays trade for a bigger bat?
Seriously, Cousin Larry? Whatever. I’m sure the Rays would love to trade for Mike Trout/Giancarlo Stanton/Derek Jeter, but it likely comes down to two things: those players are too expensive for the Rays, which I LITERALLY just explained to you. And said team would, rightfully so, demand half of our team, most of our farm system and the first born of all of our fans, which would not be good for the attendance situation at the Trop.
What do you think of Kevin Cash after his first year?
Good! He had a really short leash on our starting pitching, but that was based on some sound ideas about pitchers struggling when they're seen by batters too many times. Given the amount of injuries the starting staff had this year, he needed to do something like that to keep the team afloat. I thought he did really well. The bullpen needs work, obviously, and his usage of it wasn't always ideal (he's a rookie manager) but I am looking forward to seeing how he improves the team next year.
What are the Rays chances for 2016?
Depending on how the off-season shakes out, pretty good. We've already got some decent left-handed hitting in our trade for Logan Morrison and Brad Miller. If the Rays add another decent bat and a bullpen piece, it looks promising. We have some young prospects that should make a positive impact on our squad. Our pitching rotation got injured pretty bad last year, so as long as they can stay healthy, and the bats improve, we have a good chance at either a wild card or the AL East crown.
HOPEFULLY at this point Cousin Larry has ran out of questions, or isn't paying attention to your answers. Use this time to awkwardly excuse yourself, complain to no one in particular that there is never enough pie to go around at the end of the day, and pass out from the food coma you have put yourself in.
Authors note: Special thanks to Bless You Boys for the idea and ridiculousness.