PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. (WFLA) – The fans filled Charlotte Sports Park on Sunday afternoon to watch the Tampa Bay Rays open their spring season at home against the New York Yankees.
8 On Your Side’s Gabrielle Shirley traveled to the park to talk to the fans ahead of the game. She met one group from St. Petersburg. They called their city “the home of the Rays.”
Gary Sirmons, the ringleader of the group, told her he drives an RV full of friends to the first spring training game in Port Charlotte every year.
“We’re not going to miss it,” he said. “We love the Rays. We have been season ticket holders since day one, since 1998, my wife and I.”
He shared his favorite part of the game with her.
“The people, the excitement, seeing the new players, and the tiki bar of course!” Sirmons said with a huge smile on his face.
When he was asked about his expectations for the Rays this season, he spoke with the utmost confidence.
“Playoffs! I guarantee you playoffs,” said Sirmons. “Right now, I am the first one in Port Charlotte to guarantee you the Rays are going to be in the playoffs and appear in the World Series and win the World Series in 2020!”
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