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Rays homestand highlights

ST. PETERSBURG, FL—The Tampa Bay Rays begin a seven-game homestand on Monday, September 17 when they open a four-game series against the Boston Red Sox (September 17-20) followed by a three-game set with the Toronto Blue Jays (September 21-23).  The Rays have 10 regular season home games remaining.

The Rays will recognize their 2012 Roberto Clemente Award nominee during a pregame presentation on Tuesday, September 18.  The Roberto Clemente Award recognizes a Major League Baseball player who best represents the game of baseball through positive contributions on and off the field, including sportsmanship and community involvement.  Chevrolet will donate $7,500 to a charity of the player’s choice during a pregame ceremony.

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On Wednesday, September 19, the Rays will announce their Minor League Pitcher of the Year and Minor League Player of the Year.  The Rays will also announce one Most Valuable Player for each of their nine affiliates, as well as organization-wide awards for Best Baserunner, Best Defensive Player and Best Relief Pitcher.  This year’s winners will be honored during an awards ceremony prior to the game against the Red Sox.  A pregame autograph session will be held on the right field line from 5:45 until 6:30 p.m. featuring many of the organization’s award winners.

On Wednesday, September 19, U.S.A. Track & Field sprinter Justin Gatlin will throw out the ceremonial first pitch before the Rays-Red Sox game.  At the London 2012 Olympics, Gatlin ran a time of 9.79 seconds in the 100 meter final, earning him a bronze medal.

On Thursday, September 20, the Rays will host STAR TREK Night at Tropicana Field during the Rays-Red Sox game at 7:10 p.m.  There will be STAR TREK themed activities throughout the night, including STAR TREK characters—Klingons, Star Fleet officers and more—in the press level area of Tropicana Field throughout the game.  Fans are encouraged to come dressed in their best Trek attire.  For more information and to purchase the STAR TREK ticket package, please log on to raysbaseball.com/startrek.  The $29 ($46 value) package includes a ticket in the press level seating area and an exclusive Rays/STAR TREK T-shirt.  The one-of-a-kind T-shirts will be distributed behind Section 211 to anyone who purchased the Rays/STAR TREK ticket package.  The supply of T-shirts is based on availability and will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis.  This offer is exclusively through raysbaseball.com, and the deadline to purchase the special ticket package is Monday, September 17 at midnight.

Also on Thursday, September 20, the Rays and Pet Pal Animal Shelter—a no-kill, nonprofit shelter in St. Petersburg—are partnering on a Pet Food Drive at Tropicana Field.  Fans are encouraged to bring Science Diet brands, or other nutritious dog and cat food to assist the Pet Pal Animal Shelter community.  The collection points are located inside the rotunda at Gate 1 and at Gate 5 of Tropicana Field.  The Rays Wives and volunteers from the shelter will staff the collection points from when gates open until the end of the 2nd inning.

Starting Friday, September 21, and running throughout the final six Rays regular season home games (September 21–October 3), the Rays Baseball Foundation and the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association’s Educational Foundation (FRLAEF) are teaming up for the annual “Shirts Off Our Backs” promotion.  There will be over 300 volunteers on hand, wearing blue “Shirts Off Our Backs” T-shirts, at Tropicana Field throughout the six-day fundraiser.  All fans who donate will receive scratch-off cards giving them the opportunity to win a wide variety of prizes donated by numerous sponsors totaling more than $250,000 in value. Included in the prizes are game-worn jerseys signed by Rays players, which the players will personally present to the winners at the conclusion of the Rays-Orioles game on Wednesday, October 3.  Proceeds will benefit both foundations supporting youth and education programs.

On Friday, September 21, the Rays Wives will present a $34,000 check to All Children’s Hospital before the Rays-Blue Jays game at 7:10 p.m.  The money was raised from the Second Annual Mystery Ball and Silent Auction held on September 8.

On Friday, September 21, the Rays will team with the Tampa Bay Lightning to promote their 20th Anniversary in the National Hockey League.  As part of the celebration, all pregame activities and the 7th Inning Stretch performances will be related to the Lightning’s celebration, along with appearances by the Lightning Girls and team mascot Thunderbug.

The homestand will feature two unique giveaways.  On Friday, September 21, the first 10,000 fans will receive a free Desmond Jennings collectible T-shirt presented by Tampa Bay Times.  Collectible T-shirts have been distributed throughout the season as part of Friday Fest presented by Captain Morgan.  On Sunday, September 23, the first 10,000 kids 14 and under will receive a Matt Joyce bobblehead presented by Tampa Bay Times.

TAMPA BAY TIMES FAMILY FUN DAY (every Sunday home game)—Bring the whole family out to Tropicana Field and enjoy family-friendly activities and a chance to run the bases after the game presented by Find the Fun Now.  Family Fun Day tickets for Sunday (September 23) vs. Toronto start at $23 and include a hot dog, Pepsi and snack (subject to availability).  Visit raysbaseball.com for details.  Ticket prices increase $3 five hours prior to each game and are subject to change at the Rays discretion.  Special promotional giveaways are given to the first 10,000 kids 14 and under in attendance.

#162STRONG TICKET PACK—The Rays are offering a special #162STRONG ticket pack available immediately that will run through September 30.  The #162STRONG ticket pack includes: a ticket to any three (3) of the 10 remaining regular-season games at Tropicana Field, 10 percent discount on the total ticket price, 10 percent discount on day-of-game general concession purchases inside Tropicana Field, 25 percent discount on all day-of-game merchandise purchases inside Tropicana Field and one (1) neon #162STRONG T-shirt per pack purchased.  Packs start at $25 and are available in the Lower Box, Lower Reserved, Press Level, Baseline Box, Outfield, Upper Box, Upper Reserved and tbt* Party Deck seating categories.  Tickets are subject to availability and prices are subject to change.

TICKETS—Tickets for Rays 2012 regular season home games are available at all Ticketmaster outlets, the Rays Tampa Store (400 N. Tampa St.) and the Gate 1 Tropicana Field Box Office, as well as over the phone at 888-FAN-RAYS and 1-800-745-3000, or online at raysbaseball.com.

ESPN RANKS RAYS FIRST IN AFFORDABILITY—Earlier this month, ESPN the Magazine’s tenth annual “Ultimate Standings” ranked the Rays as the No. 1 professional sports team in Affordability, out of 122 Major League Baseball, NBA, NFL and NHL franchises. It marks the sixth consecutive year that the Rays have been ranked in ESPN’s top three in Affordability.  The Rays were also ranked No. 1 in 2009.

GATES OPEN—Monday through Thursday 1½ hours prior to game time; Friday through Sunday two hours prior to game time.

 

Key Dates

Time

Promotion

Sponsor

Quantity

Friday, September 21 vs. TOR

7:10 p.m.

Desmond Jennings Collectible T-shirt

Friday Fest

Tampa Bay Times

Captain Morgan

First 10,000 fans

Sunday, September 23 vs. TOR

1:40 p.m.

Matt Joyce Bobblehead

Tampa Bay Times

First 10,000 kids, 14 & under

 

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