With the Rays about to earn their second postseason trip in three years, it is difficult to muster up animosity for the man that ran the ship during a decade of futility. Of course, when Rays fans hated Vince Naimoli, they at least cared enough to pay attention. Now? Not so much.
Prior to Monday’s game at The Trop, Naimoli was mere blocks from the stadium, at a book store signing copies of his memoir. Well, we should say he signed A copy…
For more than an hour, he sat at that table, talking to store workers, answering customers’ questions. Hardly anyone asked about him. A half-dozen people asked about the Rays…Three hours before the first pitch, Naimoli had signed one book for a man named Lou.
It may surprise many to know that Naimoli is still an owner of the Rays (he owns 20% of the team). Three years ago, the current front office even hired a public relations expert to help bring Naimoli back to a more prominent role with the franchise. Alas, that never came to fruition.
In the end, maybe this lack of significance is good for Naimoli. Maybe in time, maybe after the Rays win their first World Championship, the fanbase will be able to forgive Naimoli, in much the same manner that Red Sox Nation has been able to forgive Billy Buckner.