Roger Mooney covers the Tampa Bay Rays for The Tampa Tribune, TBO.com and News Channel 8. He has covered the Rays since their first season in 1998, including 11 years for the Bradenton Herald. Roger has also covered Florida, South Florida and Florida State football, the Bucs and the Lightning.
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Longtime fans, Dickie V get honors
Posted Oct 9, 2008 by Marc Lancaster
Updated Oct 9, 2008 at 02:48 PM
The Rays announced 11 original season-ticket holders will throw out ceremonial first pitches before Friday’s Game 1 of the ALCS, with another original but slightly more famous season-ticket holder—Dick Vitale—doing the same Saturday before Game 2.
The fans who will get the opener going are: Jack Critchfield of Clearwater, Bette Ra Ivey of Largo, David Parry of Brandon, Dr. Pedro Morales of St. Pete, Mark Donohue of St. Pete, Gene Oliver of St. Pete, Russ Cosser of Treasure Island, Beth Di Roma of Largo, Jeff Albrecht of Sarasota, Pedro Bajo of Tampa and John Shoppell of St. Pete Beach.
In making those first-pitch choices, the Rays stuck to the same formula they followed for the first round. Original employee John Higgins did the honors for the opener, representing those who had worked for the franchise since the beginning, and Bradenton resident Paul Azinger got the call for Game 2.