Players to wear NHL jerseys to Toronto

Players to wear NHL jerseys to Toronto

ST. PETERSBURG -- Manager Joe Maddon is having his team start the next road trip in style.

As part of a theme travel day to Toronto for the Rays' three-game series against the Blue Jays from Monday to June 2, Maddon asked all his players to wear hockey jerseys. He had a simple answer when asked why.

"We're going to Canada -- Stanley Cup week," said Maddon, referring to the fact that the Stanley Cup Final between Philadelphia and Chicago start Saturday. "[It's] the national pastime of the great country of Canada."

Maddon, who said he will be wearing a St. Louis Blues jersey, noted that he had no preference as to who wins the championship.

Maddon has instituted similar dress codes in the past as a way of lightening the mood, such as a "white-out" to Miami, a "western" trip to Colorado and even a Johnny Cash-themed trip. He is working on other options for the rest of the season, including another "white-out" when the team plays the Marlins in Miami on June 18-20.

Maddon also joked about trying to purchase team blazers -- "something with plaid" -- for a future trip, although he didn't quite realize the potential cost of doing so.

"I thought you could just Google 'cool plaid team blazers' and get one," a laughing Maddon said. "But you can't."