Rays News

Tampa Bay Rays: Announce Numerous Fan Fest Changes

By Althea Pashman
Apr 3, 2016; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; A general view of Tropicana Field where the Tampa Bay Rays play the Toronto Blue Jays. Toronto Blue Jays defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 3, 2016; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; A general view of Tropicana Field where the Tampa Bay Rays play the Toronto Blue Jays. Toronto Blue Jays defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /
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Scheduling conflicts has required the Tampa Bay Rays to make new changes to their popular Fan Fest at Tropicana Field now set for February 4.

In prior years, the Tampa Bay Rays always held their Fan Fest during spring training, giving the fans the opportunity to meet current and new players. However, this year the Rays had to make numerous changes because of scheduling conflicts at Tropicana Field, an earlier start to spring training and the addition of the World Baseball Classic that cuts into exhibition games.

The biggest change to Fan Fest is that this year’s festivities is set for next Saturday, Feb 4 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. which is before the start of spring training and that only the current Rays will be signing autographs for existing ticket holders, for a donation of $100 dollars to charity which is required.

Because the event is before spring training, many players will not be in the area and will not attend the festivities (Evan Longoria, Alex Colome and Brad Miller) – and for those thinking that Longoria is not attending because of Logan Forsythe’s trade that is not the case.

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So far, only 16 players have confirmed and they include Jose De Leon, Ryne Stanek, Chris Archer, Jake Odorizzi and Kevin Kiermaier among others.

Non-season ticket holders however will be able to get free autographs from a group of former major leaguers that include Jim Perry, Rick Reichardt and others.  Former Devil Rays/Rays players, including Rolando Arrojo, Dewon Brazelton, Toby Hall, Roberto Hernandez, Doug Waechter and Orestes Destrade, Fox Sports Sun Co-host of “Rays Live,” which airs as the pre and post-game analysis as well as others.

Besides the autographs, there will be plenty of free activities that will include for the first time fans having the opportunity to take pictures from the Rays dugout, and taking a tour of the Rays clubhouse facilities. In addition, fans have the opportunity to compete against Rays players at numerous tailgate games, including 22-player foosball, pop-a-shot, air hockey, giant Jenga, ping-pong and more.

For the techies, the Tampa Bay Rays will put their social media accounts to work giving fans the opportunity for player and team interaction with exclusive prizes through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat contests throughout the day. @RaysBaseball, the Ray’s official Twitter account  will serve as a communication hub where fans can get up-to-date information on events happening throughout the day and answers to questions about Fan Fest.

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For the seventh consecutive year, all fans can purchase unique, game-used and autographed memorabilia dating back to the inaugural season at the Rays Charity Yard Sale. Moreover, for the first time, all items featured in the 162 Landing area of the Charity Yard Sale will be available for $5 each. All proceeds will benefit the Rays Baseball Foundation.

Fan Fest will once again provide the plenty of activities for the kids, including Reading with the Rays, speed pitch, batting cages and home run derby in the kids’ interactive zone, plus all kids 14 and under can get a free membership to the Rays Rookies Kids Club.

Fans will also have the opportunity to bid on exclusive Ray’s experiences at the Clubhouse Corner Silent Auction. To date, Rays Fan Fest has raised more than $465,000, allowing the Foundation to support youth and educational programming in the Tampa Bay region.

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Fans can call 888-FAN-RAYS or visit raysbaseball.com/FanFest for more information about 2017 Rays Fan Fest.

19 Days Until Pitchers and Catchers Report to Spring Training

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