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Picture of the Day: There’s a 20-foot snake in the Rays’ clubhouse

Aug 15, 2013, 4:16 PM EDT

For some reason Rays manager Joe Maddon arranged for a 20-foot snake to be brought into the clubhouse before today’s game and Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times snapped a photo:

I kind of hope the Rays win tonight and then hanging out with a huge snake before every game becomes their superstition.

  1. elwaysagenius - Aug 15, 2013 at 4:20 PM

    Would have been cooler if he had a large pool and a stingray brought in

    • donnaturner6566 - Aug 15, 2013 at 6:28 PM

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      • js20011041 - Aug 15, 2013 at 6:39 PM


  2. Francisco (FC) - Aug 15, 2013 at 4:32 PM

    I suppose it’s better than the White Elephant or the 800lb Gorilla….

  3. kevinbnyc - Aug 15, 2013 at 4:38 PM

    It’s to build chemistry. Everybody knows how important snakes are to chemistry. And everybody knows how important chemistry is to winning.

  4. jtpercell - Aug 15, 2013 at 4:38 PM

    It probably has something to do with the 6 game losing streak that started when they were swept by the Dbacks last week.

    • kruegere - Aug 15, 2013 at 6:29 PM

      Wait, what losing streak? The Rays are on a 1 game winning streak!

  5. yahmule - Aug 15, 2013 at 4:42 PM

    I started to watch a show about the proliferation of wild Burmese Pythons in Florida. After hearing them refer to these animals as monsters five times in the first two minutes, I decided to change the channel.

    • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2013 at 6:54 PM

      Yeah, but this one is a reticulated python, not a Burmese python. Retics get almost twice as long as Burmese – the record is somewhere around 36 feet or so – but they’re much more cold sensitive and can’t handle even the Macondo weenters, thank Buddha. Ergo, they’re not the kind of local environmental threat as their smaller cousins. Retics have a nastier disposition than the Burmese – even a baby retic is pretty obstreperous – though Burmese are much heavier-bodied than a retic of the same length, which makes them more dangerous in a clutch.

      But Maddon has the right idea. We should be pressing congress to grant full legal indigenousness to Burmese pythons, stop stigmatizing them as “invasive” and accept the fact that they’re here. It’s only the special interests, like the alligator farmers and dog and cat owners, who oppose this for their own selfish reasons. That’s why we’ve founded the annual Invasive Species Festival – for which Craig owns a shirt that he wears as proudly as his new Pirates cap.

      • APBA Guy - Aug 15, 2013 at 7:43 PM

        Now I heard-stop me if you’ve heard this already-that your Governor wants to test all the invasive species for drugs, and have his wife’s company process the tests. Seems he feels these pythons are all “takers” and shouldn’t be taking the stray dogs, cats, rats, et al that rightfully are prey of the native predators, who the pythons seem to have developed a taste for as well.

      • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2013 at 7:53 PM

        Not all of them. Just 47% of them.

      • Glenn - Aug 15, 2013 at 8:00 PM

        OG – I think your tongue is firmly planted in your cheek, at least I hope. Invasive species are the second biggest threat to native wildlife, with only habitat loss a bigger one. Disney’s “Rat that Ate Florida” is taking care of the latter.

      • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2013 at 8:44 PM

        Ever read Carl Hiaasen’s Team Rodent? If the subject interests you, there’s the definitive treatment of El Ratone Grande. Best book about the Disney destruction of central Florida ever written:

      • skinsfanwill - Aug 16, 2013 at 11:17 AM

        Are you people friggin crazy? Since when is a snake not a threat to humans? Let one get hungry enough and a kid comes walking by. That kid is dinner. You animal lovers need to stop putting animals before humanity. Pets and animals are cool, but they are in no way in the same class or hierarchy as humans. Now if they are dangerous to humans, they need to be removed. Period.

    • Old Gator - Aug 16, 2013 at 6:11 PM

      “I think it’s wonderful that we live in a world full of things that can eat us.”
      ….Gary Larson

  6. romoscollarbone - Aug 15, 2013 at 4:46 PM

    There’s always someone (man or woman) who is terrified of large snakes/rats/bugs/etc in any workplace. I want to see that photo. You know the one where they walk into the clubhouse reading their texts, look up see a 20ft snake, and do that run away and look back thing all at once and scream.

    • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2013 at 7:54 PM

      The fear is totally irrational. Remember what Freud said: sometimes, a twenty foot python is just a twenty foot python.

  7. @Cereal_22 - Aug 15, 2013 at 4:46 PM

    I always feel a little awkward when people talk about snakes, footage & clubhouses in the same sentence.

    • kevinbnyc - Aug 15, 2013 at 4:55 PM

      Lacking confidence? There’s a pill for that.

  8. kane337 - Aug 15, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    Gotta love Joe Madden

    • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2013 at 7:55 PM

      If I were a python, I would love him even more if he’d throw me a goat.

  9. ditto65 - Aug 15, 2013 at 5:17 PM


    I guess the stupid travel outfits weren’t getting enough airplay.

  10. thegonz13 - Aug 15, 2013 at 5:18 PM

    So… what? Is that supposed to make tem play better?

  11. sportsdrenched - Aug 15, 2013 at 5:19 PM

    Snakes and bats on the sameday on HBT. Is this going to be a trend? A daily wildlife post or something? I propose that tomorrow be Marmot & Black Bear Day.

    • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2013 at 6:55 PM

      Anything works for me, except meerkats. I hate meerkats.

  12. beelza - Aug 15, 2013 at 6:20 PM

    I had no idea congress had it’s own mascot. A 20 foot snake is appropriate thogh.

    • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2013 at 8:45 PM

      I think a lemming would be more appropriate. A dumb lemming.

  13. basiltharat - Aug 15, 2013 at 10:31 PM

    I love snakes, but I’d still be a tad nervous about handling a 20-foot retic; they can be pretty nasty customers. Gorgeous animal though, and I salute Joe Maddon for advancing the cause of serpent tolerance.

    • Old Gator - Aug 15, 2013 at 10:43 PM

      I’m nervous even about handling a hatchling retic. As I wrote above, they’re touchy – and they’ve got mean dispositions and very long teeth, even as hatchlings. Not as bad as an emerald tree python, but still…..

  14. indaburg - Aug 16, 2013 at 5:31 AM

    The Rays broadcast last night had footage of this. It was pretty funny to see the players’ reactions. Wil Myers, for example, reacted normally. Nervously smiled and kept his distance. Luke Scott, on the other hand, wrapped the creature around his neck, as did Fernando Rodney. You can tell a lot about a man by the way he handles a 20 foot snake. Luke and Rodney be crazy.

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