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Friday, April 5, 2013
Rays apologize for mascot photo

Associated Press

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- The Tampa Bay Rays apologized for what the team described as a lapse in judgment by a club mascot photographed holding an "inappropriate sign" making reference to Steve Irwin, a popular television personality and wildlife expert who died in 2006 after being attacked by a stingray.

The furry mascot known as Raymond was handed a "Rays To Do List" by a fan during Wednesday night's game against Baltimore. The sign had "1. Steve Irwin" crossed off" and listed the World Series second.

The team issued an apology after a photo of the mascot holding the sign wound up on the Internet. A statement said fans are welcome to carry signs that are not offensive into the ballpark but that the club regretted "this particular sign" was displayed.