Philadelphia and Tampa Bay: A Odd Rivalry

Could the 2008 World Series cement an already budding rivalry between the cities of Philadelphia and Tampa Bay? These places couldn’t be more different, but for some reason their paths have crossed. Granted, the Rays play in St Petersburg and the Buccaneer’s play in Tampa, but we’ll ignore that inconvenient fact.


Philadelphia:? The City of Brotherly Love
Population: 5.8 Million
Latitude and Longitude: 39? 53′ N 75? 15′ W
Claim to Fame: Cheesesteaks, Rocky, original USA capital

Tampa Bay: An Actual Bay, not a City
Population: St Petersburg 248,098, Tampa 382,060
Latitude and Longitude: 27? 58′ N 82? 32′ W
Claim to Fame: Humidity, Phillies Spring training, Your grandparents live there


The Eagles traded up in the 1995 to get Mike Mamula and the Bucs settled for 7 time pro bowler and future Dancing with the Stars star, Warren Sapp.

Sapp and the Bucs faced the Eagles three straight years in the playoffs (2000 – 2002) with the Eagles winning the first two, but the Bucs winning the 2002 NFC championship game and eventually beating Oakland in the Superbowl. Many in Philadelphia consider the 2002 NFC championship game to be the worst of all the recent playoff losses, especially since this was the last game ever played at Veterans Stadium.

If that wasn’t enough, the Bucs and the Eagles played the FIRST WEEK of 2003 and the Eagles lost the first regular season game at Lincoln Financial Field.

It’s not isolated to football though…

In 2004 the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Flyers in the Eastern Conference Finals and went on to win the Stanley Cup.

I think the 2008 World Series could set off a new era of rivalry between the cities.

Update: Look what they’re writing!


Little did many know that the Rays ticket to the World Series was punched as soon as the Phillies won the NLCS. It was fate.

In 2002, after two straight playoff blowouts at the hands of the Eagles, the Bucs finally broke through with a win in Philadelphia in the NFC championship game. The Bucs went on to win their first Super Bowl.

In 2004, the Lightning beat the Flyers in seven games in the Eastern Conference finals. The Bolts went on to win their first Stanley Cup championship.

Now, the only thing that stands between the Rays and their first World Series trophy is, of course, the Philadelphia Phillies. Nothing gives a Tampa Bay sports fan more pleasure than helping the City of Brotherly Love keep to their losing ways.

I didn’t even know that the Bucs beat the Eagles in their first ever playoff game.

in?their first-ever playoff appearance,? the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Philadelphia Eagles 24-17.? That was December 29, 1979.

Plus, the Phillies are the only American pro team to LOSE 10,000 games.? They blame it all on some?Curse of William Penn.??No?wonder?the Jan Brady of Northeast Cities has the least happy fans.

Anyway, in both hockey and football, Tampa Bay vs. Philadelphia has become quite a fun rivalry.? And now a Tampa Bay team has the opportunity to beat a Philadelphia team in baseball, too.? It all starts Wednesday.

At least we have That One on our side.

Over a week ago, Barack Obama, a diehard White Sox fan, pledged his support in these MLB playoffs to the Phillies. His reasoning was this:

?I think that I?m going to have to root for Philly potentially because my campaign manager is a fanatical Phillies fan and I don?t want him mad at me for the next few weeks.?


2 responses to “Philadelphia and Tampa Bay: A Odd Rivalry”

  1. i was listening to some baseball radio show on XM the other day, and a fan from tampa basically called out the entire tampa fanbase. after attending games at various points throughout the season, he had made the keen observation that home games for the rays were nowhere even close to selling out. and well, you can guess the rest. he even gave credit to philly fans in general for continued support of their sports teams, through good times and bad.

    back in college, i went to a couple tampa bay lightning games and i’d be surprised if that place was even filled to a quarter of capacity. i mean, have you ever gone to any game in philly and parked somewhere where you could actually hit the stadium/arena just by throwing a rock at it? you certainly can in tampa.

    the bottom line is, tampa is the real frontrunner town. i’d say it’s the frontrunner capital of the world (or LA, who just runs losing teams out of the city). BJ Upton said it himself, “I used to tell people I played for the Devil Rays and they’d ask, ‘Who are the Devil Rays?’” right on, BJ.

    tampa fans try to make the case that their town is a true sports town. i don’t buy that crap. the truth is in the attendance numbers. if the teams don’t win, nobody cares to watch. i’ve seen it myself with my own eyes. if tampa teams are winning, it’s because of the organization, their management, and their players. not because of their so-called “fans.”

    and as for this quote… “Nothing gives a Tampa Bay sports fan more pleasure than helping the City of Brotherly Love keep to their losing ways.” well, win or lose, nothing would give this philadelphia sports fan more pleasure than beating the crap out of a tampa bay sports fan.

  2. longest comment ever!

    To be fair on the Rays attendance, they only have a half a million people and most of them are home watching Murder She Wrote.