Rays fans and Tropicana Field are routinely ripped by media and out-of-towners, and the usual defense is the critics don't really know what they're talking about.
Well, now the major-league players have spoken.
Or at least some of them.
Rays fans shared top billing with the Marlins as "the worst" in the majors in a poll of about 240 players by The Athletic web site. (For what it's worth, next in line were Mets and Yankees fans.)
And Tampa Bay finished behind only Oakland as "the worst city/ballpark to visit" for the responding players.
Piling on, the Chicago Tribune, which previously ranked the Trop as the worst of the 30 major-league stadiums, calling it "an awful mistake of a ballpark," has now rated the neighborhoods around the stadiums.
You betcha, the Trop.
(Boston was tops.)
Wrote the rankers: "Downtown St. Petersburg, with its waterfront parks and cute restaurants and bars, is quite nice. But Tropicana Field is more than a mile away from that main drag and surrounded on three sides by parking lots and highways. That's OK — nobody wants to spend extra time looking at the ugliest ballpark in baseball anyway."