Dexter Rogers

Dexter Rogers

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

World Series: Win or lose the Tampa Bay Rays are winners

After personally watching the Rays split the first two games with the Philadelphia Phillies in Florida I saw first hand what a special group they really are. Whether the Tampa Bay Rays win this years’ World Series or not I feel they are winners.

As much as I love and follow sports I must admit this team flew under my radar. Like most of the baseball world I’ve now taken heed to the message: the Tampa Bay Rays are for real. I predict they’ll win it all.

The Rays are collection of young players who were unknown to most in the sports world. Their claim to fame was being the worst team in baseball last year. Now they are on the cusps of shaking up the baseball world.

Of course they are playing a game while making millions of dollars but they don’t play for the money. This squad truly plays for the love of the game. The way this team plays they’d play in an empty stadium with passion. I think they’d play at a public park just as hard as they are now playing on the world’s biggest stage.

I asked a Tampa Rays employee about this year’s attendance and she responded, “You could literally sit anywhere you wanted for most of the year. Up until they started to win the place was literally half full at best.”

I then asked when did attendance pick up. She stated, “In August attendance began to soar and the city really began to take notice.”

Not only has the city of St. Petersburg taken notice the entire baseball world is bewildered how this team came out of know where to be in the World Series.

I can sum it up in one word.


It didn’t matter to youngsters like Evan Longoria, B.J. Upton Matt Garza and Carl Crawford that the sports world noticed them or not. Passion isn’t predicated on if you are recognized. All that matters is engaging in your passion and the rest will take care of itself.
Everyone in society and sports should take note of what's happening before our eyes. One of the reasons I have such an intimate relationship with sports is you can learn valuable lessons that can make you grow. Sports can help one understand and simply the complexities of life.
Sports also bring people together. Teams often rally around a common goal to achieve something that’s good for all. Would it be wonderful if we took those things that are harmonic in sport and use them in society?

To me this World Series is bigger than sports. It’s about dreams, confidence, and passion for ones craft. I terms of passion I can relate to the Rays in what they are doing this year. My writing has taken a similar path as their season. My skills didn’t ascend the conventional way. No journalism schools, internships, or so-called formal training. I didn't ask for permission to do what I wanted: I used my passion for sports, talent along with a large dose of persistence to endure.

Though I have college education schools can’t teach you persistence or give degrees in passion. Yes, one must have a measure of talent to succeed but it gets you only so far. Talent along with passion and persistence can consistently position you to deliver the goods.

In life and sports it doesn't come down to the most talented. The team with passion or the person who lives with passion succeeds.

As a writer I'm in awe of the so-called marquee writers with major papers. My being along side the best at the World Series solidifies what I believe. I know in my heart and mind I'm good at what I do. It’s not bragging because I’m consistently delivering the goods from a unique vantage point.

When the lights are off and no one is around witness you mastering your craft that’s when you grow: when it’s time for that light to shine you'll simply do what you've been training to do in the dark. So performing at an optimal level can be all but assured.

When one has true passion success has a way of finding you. I get a similar sensation when manufacturing works from a perspective that differs from most. If you are passionate about something sooner or later the world will have to give you your due without solicitation.
Just ask the Tampa Bay Rays.

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