Big League Stew - MLB

Disappointing news: Those of us wanting Joe Maddon to choose a "Mad Men" theme for his Tampa Bay Rays so we can see him as Roger Sterling will again have to wait for another trip to play the New York Yankees.

But while we're keeping our fingers crossed for an all-AL East ALCS — if only to see Evan Longoria(notes) forced to copy Joan Holloway's hourglass — we'll take what the Rays actually wore on Sunday before departing to New York for this week's big four-game series.

Tampa Bay's entire traveling party wore Loudmouth pants in honor of old-timey manager Clarence "Pants" Rowland, who managed the 1917 Chicago White Sox. Rowland's World Series-winning team was no-hit twice that season and the Rays are aiming for a similar conclusion after being blanked in the hits column by Dallas Braden(notes) and Edwin Jackson(notes).

Now, perhaps it also occurred to you that the Rays might have more budget to sign players if Maddon wasn't requiring all these elaborate costumes for his team-building exercises (it also wore a bunch of pricey hockey jerseys before heading to Toronto in June). 

But relax, penny-pinching Rays fans: Andrew Friedman won't have to worry about it coming out of his (already short) end because Loudmouth actually picked up the tab for this good publicity. If the company is interested in some more exposure, I know a good baseball blogger who'd be willing to wear them behind his computer for a few days. 

(I promise not to look as awkward as the Rays players did in this video by Marc Topkin of the St. Pete Times):

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