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Report: Rays Looking to Add a ‘St. Petersburg’ Jersey

The Tampa Bay Rays play in the city of St. Petersburg but don’t mention that city in any of their branding — something that’s long been a sore point among St. Pete residents and politicos. But it looks like the team may be looking to throw their host city a uni-related bone.

According to a report from, “The Rays will petition Major League Baseball to wear St. Petersburg-branded uniforms during at least one home game per season.”

The article also has this quote from Doyle Walsh, chief of staff to St. Petersburg mayor Ken Welch: “Mayor Welch’s administration has requested that the Rays’ leadership also go back and look at ways to increase opportunities to wear these uniforms. They’ve agreed, and they’re working with MLB on that.”

Interesting! The full “St. Petersburg” moniker would probably be unwieldy to fit on a jersey (with 12 letters plus a period and a space, it has more characters than “San Francisco”), but I imagine they’d just go with “St. Pete.”

It’s worth noting that the Rays are among the 10 MLB teams that do not yet have a City Connect uniform. That would be a perfect opportunity to showcase the city that the team actually plays in, right? But a jersey that would be worn for “at least one home game per season” doesn’t sound like CC.

According to Bill Henderson’s jersey guide, the Rays wore throwbacks based on St. Petersburg minor league teams four times from 2000 through 2008, but only one of those jerseys had the city name on the chest:

In case you’re wondering: The Buccaneers and Lightning play in Tampa, so the St. Pete folks don’t have any issues with them — just with the Rays.

(My thanks to Matthew Wolfram and Phil for bringing this story to my attention.)

Comments (32)

    I guess I don’t understand why this is a “sore point”… St. Petersburg is a city… on the Tampa Bay. There is no misnomer here.

    I guess it depends where the money is coming from. How many tax $ from the city are going towards the stadium or team?

    Stadium lease deal/renovation using taxpayer funds led to the Anaheim Angels monicker…same could be at play in ‘Tampa Bay’.

    I never read anything about Massachusetts getting bent out of shape about them being called the _New England_ Patriots.

    I was under the impression the swap to New England was specifically to strengthen their hand in negotiating for those types of things, actually. Sort of opposite means for the same ends.

    Like Daniel said it is probably a money thing. I would also say that St.Pete is tired of being the little brother of the Tampa Bay metro area, and wants to be seen as an equal.

    I actually think the team made a pretty good point when the pointed out, even the former St. Pete Times changed their name to the Tampa Bay Times. Not to mention, the two other regional teams, Bucs and Lightning are both based within Tampa city limits and yet, they also choose to take the Tampa Bay moniker.

    Because, with the exception of the minor league baseball Tarpons (and the later Yankees who eventually took the Tarpons moniker), every team in the area starting with the Rowdies in 1975 has been known as “Tampa Bay.”

    The Bucs followed, as did the arena football Storm and the Lightning (who played in St. Pete after one year on the Hillsborough side and then moved back when their current arena was finished) and the Mutiny and everyone else, major, whatever.

    Tampa is the main city in the area, but more than 90 percent of the Bay Area’s population does NOT live in Tampa. The “Tampa Bay” appellation exists to appeal to the entire area, whether you live in Lutz or Safety Harbor or Brandon. That’s the idea.

    That’s why it drives me nuts when (and NBC Sports is the worst at this) TV people and commenters refer to the Bucs or the Lightning or whoever as “Tampa.” The teams are deliberately NOT “Tampa” for a reason.

    The St. Pete Times changed to Tampa Bay Times because the Tampa Tribune went out of business.

    They became the sole newspaper for the Tampa Bay Area.

    Because almost everyone refers to them as “Tampa,” which is completely incorrect.

    The STP logo from the Pelicans jersey script would look terrific as a standalone side-of-chest logo and as a cap logo. Just the slightest tweaks to the letter shapes would bring it into line with the team’s current prominent TB and R cap and jersey elements.

    Plus, using the STP logo as a cap and jersey logo would be more than vaguely Yankeesish, which is a good thing for a team in still-Yankees-heavy Florida.

    As a Rays fan this does sound fun, I’d love to get a jersey with an arched “St. Pete” across the chest. It might not be enough, but the Rays’ single-a team was the “St. Petersburg” Devil Rays, Identical jerseys with a different hat. link. Might not be enough for the people wanting a “St. Pete” branded jersey though.
    Plus is this that much more different than the Warriors having a “The Town” jersey, Even if they are the “Golden State” Warriors?

    I still have my St. Petersburg Devil Rays hat.

    Those St. Pete Pelicans jerseys and hats are the best of all the Tampa Bay baseball used except the 2010 “TBC To 1970” Tampa Tarpons jerseys,

    Also, the 2013-2017 fauxbacks jerseys (navy w/lt. blue) had a St. Petersburg patch on the sleeve at times.

    I’m looking forward to getting my hands on a St. Pete Rays jersey.

    Isn’t this the exact point of the CC uniforms? Why wouldn’t they just do this and where it often? Every Sunday????

    Please, make that a hard NO on the St. Pete CC jerseys.

    Nike will sure turn it into a hideous spectacle like they have done in the past (see Reds 2023).

    Now if we could get an “er” logo on the Football Giants’ helmets for one home game a season…

    Reminds me of the city of Anaheim with the Angels. The Los Angeles Angels aren’t even in Los Angeles County, whereas the Rays are at least part of the Tampa Bay Area. Of course the extreme is the Jets and Giants, who aren’t even in the same state as their name.

    I don’t know that it’s the most extreme example. While they’re in a different state MetLife Stadium is still only about 10 miles west of Manhattan. Levi’s Stadium is a good four times farther or so away from the SF city limits.

    Here’s an original thought – “St. Pete” in script, with a graphic of a baseball bat inserted through the “S” and above the “P”. Two juncos (aka “snowbirds’) perch on the bat. BFBS – Birds For Birds’ Sake.

    Cool idea in general, but juncos wouldn’t be the best bird to use since they aren’t found in that area.

    The term ‘snowbird’ is a semi-affectionate slang reference to northerners who spend the winter in Florida and are not native to the area.


    “In case you’re wondering: The Buccaneers and Lightning play in Tampa, so the St. Pete folks don’t have any issues with them — just with the Rays.”

    Not major league, but owned (I think) by the same group that owns the Rays.
    Tampa Bay Rowdies/Al Lang Stadium.


    RE: Anaheim vs. Los Angeles Angels

    For years the Lions played in Pontiac Michigan and the Pistons played in Auburn Hills (Oakland County). Detroit is in Wayne County. I never remember a drive to call them the Pontiac Lions or Auburn Hills Pistons.

    Landover Commanders anyone? How about the Arlington Cowboys? East Rutherford Jets/Giants? Cumberland Braves?

    And St. Pete Might be PO’d because the Tampa Bay Rays address (per MLB dot com) is Tropicana Field
    One Tropicana Drive, St. Petersburg, FL 33705

    RE: New York vs. New Jersey/East Rutherford

    There are a few on here who continuously bring up the fact that neither the Giants nor Jets play in New York, which is 100% true, but both teams were named for New York City, NOT New York State, so it’s incorrect to, even jokingly, refer to the Giants or Jets as the “Jersey Giants” or the “Jersey Jets” (though the latter has nice alliteration).

    As I’ve also pointed out countless times, East Rutherford is about EIGHT miles west of NYC (12 miles if you’re driving — or about 3 hours, lol), and there are countless teams who play further from the city after which they are named (well, not countless, it’s actually eight) — link — than the Jets/Giants are away from NYC. But only a few like to refer to the 49ers as say, the Santa Clara 49ers, or the Arlington Cowboys.

    Be that as it may, if you wish to refer to either team as the East Rutherford Giants/Jets, I’m ok with that, as it’s factually correct. It is NOT however, correct to refer to either team as the “New Jersey ________”.

    Also — a couple friends said to me “why aren’t you a Bills fan? They play in your state?” years ago, as if they played “close” to me. There are five NFL franchises (New England, Philly, Baltimore, Washington and even Pittsburgh) that are closer to NYC than Buffalo.

    Anyhoo….not trying to criticize or single anyone out — it’s all good. But can we please dispense with the notion that the Giants/Jets were named for the state?

    only a few like to refer to the 49ers as say, the Santa Clara 49ers, or the Arlington Cowboys.

    I not only like… I LOVE saying Santa Clara 49ers.

    I like saying Arlington Cowboys, but only as much as I like saying Inglewood Rams/Chargers. It’s technically correct but not egregiously wrong like a suburb of San Jose hanging on to an old identifier.

    “ It is NOT however, correct to refer to either team as the “New Jersey ________”.
    As naming-wrong as it may be, from time-to time…
    I’m Still Calling Them Jersey A and Jersey B

    “St. Pete” is more likely but it might be neat to see double-decker “Saint Petersburg”

    So St Pete does not think they are part of the “TAMPA BAY” area I guess! If the Rays wear a St Pete jersey, I will no longer be an stm!

    First of all, oakland and San Francisco aren’t crying about the golden state warriors, nor is foxborough crying about the patriots. Tampa bay is the region, tampa bay is what’s on the jerseys, TB on the hats. Everyone in the area is being “specifically” excluded so that everyone in the area can be “generally” included.

    That said, this is literally a job for the CC uni. St Pete wants more city connection, make it the city connect uni. Making an “alternate” (either for one game or many games) seems like unnecessary bureaucracy when Nike already has the go ahead for their schtick which is named after the thing St Pete’s wants.

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