Friday, March 9, 2007

Tampa Bay Devil Rays President Buys Team Fan

PHOENIX (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – Tampa Bay Devil Rays president Matt Silverman is willing to do anything to attract fans – even buy one.

Silverman just paid $535 to Manny Stiles, a Phoenix man who recently auctioned off his services as a sportswriter on

Stiles admits he was shocked that the team president paid for his services, and even more shocked that Silverman wants to him to be completely honest with his feelings.

Says Stiles: “About the only thing Silverman told me was that he was sad no one pushed the bids up.”

As part of his agreement, Stiles will write at least 50 articles on the Rays, who he says are a perfect fit for his unique style of sportswriting.

As he puts it, “I’m a quirky, odd fellow and they don’t have a legacy. I will stray away from the questions everyone else asks, such as those about steroids and stats.”

Covering the Devil Rays won’t be easy for Stiles, who lives in Phoenix and may only see the team in person when the Rays play his home town team the Arizona Diamondbacks.

He’s not bothered by that, nor is he worried that the team’s traditionally pathetic performance will go on for another season.

In his words, “The talent is there. At some point, it has to turn the corner.”

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