Manatees Could Care Less

The Tampa Bay Devil Rays are now the Tampa Bay Rays, and man did they miss the boat. Even after changing their name, they're still the only Major League team that claims dominion over a body of water instead of a city or state. Who cares if they play in Saint Petersburg? Both New York football teams play in New Jersey. You can't tell me that the people of Tampa look down on Saint Petersburg more than the natives of New York look down on Jersey. Due to the franchise's short but consistent history of ineptitude, many fans had taken to calling the team the Devil Dogs. In addition to wiping out their unoficial team name, the franchise has also leaked the most bland logo and uniform ever to grace a baseball diamond. I guess top prospect Joe Player looks sort of confident in the artist's rednerings, though he must have paid a tidy sum in kangaroo court to take over Rocco Baldelli's number.

Back in 2005, New Jersey State Assemblyman Craig Stanley (also a Baptist deacon), pushed for the New Jersey Devils of the National Hockey League to remove their "negative symbolism" but was quickly shot down, as the hockey team's name is an homage to the Jersey Devil.

I'm surprised the Left hasn't covered this more (Dave Zirin where are you?), but I didn't find any protests by Christian fundies during a quick googling. My guess is that team officials citing a negative association in focus groups last year is almost as bland as the team's new uniforms, leaving Progressive browbeaters with little ammunition.

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