Tonight is Turn Back the Clock Night for the Rays, and they will be wearing the 1951 Tampa Smokers uniforms. As we discussed previously, the Rays made some changes to the Smokers logo, because you know, nobody wants to appear like they are promoting smoking with a jersey that has “Smokers” written across the front.

Cam Martin of Yahoo! Sports wrote about the uniform modifications. He spoke with Jonah Keri and myself. As you can imagine, Jonah and I had slightly different feelings on the subject. [Yahoo! Sports]



  1. Amanda says:

    If the Wiggles weren't performing on the same night, would they have taken out the cigar? I don't think having the Wiggles as a concert series is a bad idea. (It's a damn good idea -- expose the kids to baseball.) But it's supposed to be '50s night. Why not get a do-wop group, or something along that vein? I bet you anything they wouldn't have taken out the cigar otherwise. You're right, Cork ... it's not a small oversight. It's a slap in the face to the heritage of Tampa. (Then again, maybe that was the point, too.)

    • Cork Gaines says:

      I'm sorry. This post was originally supposed to go up on Friday. So I wrote that the game was "tomorrow" when in fact it is tonight.

      • Amanda says:

        AAhhh, thanks. Again, that's cool because that's usually Kids' Day, and good on them for that. But you're absolutely right, Cork, on the original arguement anyway. It's the thought police. The kids should know that Tampa is famous for their cigar industry, and it can be mutually exclusive from promoting smoking.

  2. Maria says:

    The wiggles perform on Sunday...

  3. Beth says:

    I'm with you on this, Cork. If you are going to be the "smokers" keep the darned cigar.

    I love teams that are named for things that are produced in a city (although I get that Tampa never produced smokers, but the "Smokers" name stems from the production of cigars) -- the Steelers, Packers and Brewers remind us that these teams dwell in cities where, at least once upon a time, many fans would have worked in those industries. And for us in the region, the cigar industry seems richer than our other alternatives (the Tampa Bay Phospherous? Tampa Bay Sprawl?)

    And by the way, those uniforms look great on the players.

    • ALLEN says:

      Agreed. I too liked the uniforms. As one who does not favor promoting smoking, I love history and the old uniforms had a cigar. Out with the thought police. Are we going to remove my beloved South from the history of the United States just because we advocated slavery? Knowledge is a wonderful thing. Lack of knowledge is a dangerous thing.

      Go Smokers!
      Go RAYS!


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