As if I needed one more reason to loathe Sarah Palin, here's another: she likened the Republican presidential ticket to the Tampa Bay Rays Tuesday in Jacksonville, FL, saying in her distinctive Alaskanasal, "The people in this area know a little something about turning an underdog into a victor, and we're counting on you to help us do that November 4."
(The Rays -- who dropped the "Devil" from their name this year -- had their first winning season in their eleven-year history in '08 and are moving on to the American League Championship Series to face my Sox, last year's World Series champs.)
But, you know, sports allegiances aside, Palin may have a point. Tampa Bay has the second-lowest payroll in Major League Baseball, and the other teams remaining in the playoffs have spent two to three times the money that they have. And they've only ever finished out of last place twice in team history. So they are underdogs. And, like Palin, the Rays are young, as a franchise and in terms of the average age of their starting line-up.
Although I wonder if Palin would be so quick to compare her ticket and its supporters to the Tampa Bay Rays and their fans if someone had actually briefed her on the fact that the ray have the shittiest fans in baseball. Last month, when Tampa Bay held the best record in the bigs, their fans turned out in record-low numbers. Typically, there are as many fans rooting for the opposing team at Tropicana Field as there are fans root-root-rooting for the home team. And that's when there are fans attending at all; the Rays rank a dismal 26th among 30 teams in fan attendance, averaging crowds of 21,459 in a 36,048-seat stadium. As a point of comparison, the Red Sox have sold out every home game since 2003 and Fenway is already sold out for next season.
So, if this is the kind of support Palin is "counting on" to make her and McCain "victors" in November, all I can say is, Bless her stupid heart.
Watch the full clip here: