ST. PETERSBURG -- Bobby Wilson has been with the Angels since 2008, has appeared in 120 games and spent the entirety of last season in the big leagues. But he has never once played at Tropicana Field.
To most, that would be nothing more than a statistical oddity. But it means a lot more to Wilson, who grew up 10 minutes north in Seminole, Fla., where he makes his offseason home, and always has a bunch of friends and family at the stadium when the Angels visit the Rays.
Sometimes it's 20, sometimes it's close to 50 and sometimes it's more than 100 members of the Wilson contingent who take their seats -- the vast majority of which are self-purchased -- anticipating the day they see one of their own play for the Angels.
So far, though, they've been left disappointed.
"It's nice to see the family and stuff, but it'd be nice to be able to play in front of them," Wilson said. "I think I've been here for five or six series and I haven't played in any of them. They're just patiently waiting."
Wilson was born in Dunedin, Fla., attended Seminole High School and then went to St. Petersburg College. The Rays didn't come into existence until 1998, when Wilson was already 15, so he didn't technically grow up a Rays fan. But he does like seeing them do well, just because they're from his area.
Wilson estimates there are 150 people here to see him in this three-game series, in which Chris Iannetta has caught the first two games.
He's really hoping he plays Thursday afternoon -- a good chance considering the quick turnaround.
"It'd be nice to play in front of them," said Wilson, who has hit .429 in four games. "Maybe. We'll see what happens. You never know."