Tom Jones was born and raised in a suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and studied English at the University of South Florida from 1982 to 1986.
He began his writing career with the St. Petersburg Evening Independent in 1985. He then went on to work for the St. Petersburg Times from 1987 to 1991, the Tampa Tribune from 1991 to 1996, the St. Petersburg Times again from 1996 to 2000 and the Minneapolis Star-Tribune from 2000 to 2003. He then rejoined the St. Petersburg Times for a third time in his career in 2003, where he worked ever since.
Jones has spent most of his career covering the NHL, including being a beat writer for more than 15 years of the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Minnesota. Wild. He also spent two years on the Tampa Bay Rays beat. He then become a columnist at Times starting in 2007. Jones has won several national and state writing awards, including a top 10 game story in the nation in 1998 as named by the Associated Press Sports Editors.
Over the course of his career, Jones has covered the Olympics, the World Series, the Super Bowl, the Stanley Cup finals, baseball and hockey all-star games, the NCAA basketball tournament and the Frozen Four.
Jones lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Patty, and sons, Sam and Andy.
With over two decades of reporting on professional and collegiate sports for the Tampa Bay Times, through performance and work experience in journalism and broadcasting in television and radio, Rick Stroud has cultivated an impressive list of sources and utilized his knowledge to produce an outstanding body of work in both print and electronic mediums.
During his career, Stroud has reported on national sporting events including 22 Super Bowls, the NCAA Final Four, and the Major League Baseball Playoffs. While working as the beat writer assigned to the University of Florida at the Times, Stroud’s stories documented NCAA rules violations by the football and basketball programs. The stories for which Stroud won second place for Best Investigative Reporting from the Associated Press Sports Editors, led to sanctions against both Gators programs.
Since 2004, Stroud has appeared as an NFL Insider for ESPN2’s First Take and is a regular contributor to ESPN’s SportsCenter, NFL Live, Outside the Lines and Herd with Colin Cowherd on ESPN Radio. He also contributes to NFL Network’s Total Access.
Stroud becan covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the National Football League in 1990. Since then, the Bucs have undergone seven coaching changes, the death of owner Hugh Culverhouse and the sale of the franchise to billionaire owner Malcolm Glazer and a stadium referendum. They also celebrated a Super Bowl XXVII victory. His reporting was referenced in Tony Dungy’s best seller, Quiet Strength, particularly because it was Stroud who informed Dungy of the Bucs’ plan to replace him with Giants Super Bowl coach Bill Parcells.
A former Div. I-A baseball player at Arkansas , Stroud brings a unique perspective to sports reporting. During the NFL lockout in 2011, he also served as one of the Times’ beat writers responsible for covering the Tampa Bay Rays.
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Derek Jeter will likely join Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira and Curtis Granderson on the New York Yankees' star-studded disabled list for the season opener against the Boston Red Sox on April 1.
Yankees general manager Brian Cashman says it's "more likely than not" Jeter will start on the DL because of a sore left ankle, still recovering from surgery last October.
"April 1 is unrealistic in my mind now," Cashman said Sunday. "There's nothing new going on other than growing pains as he gets through these final hurdles of his rehab."
Eduardo Nunez, known for his bat more than his glove, would fill in at shortstop for the 13-time All-Star, who broke the ankle Oct. 13 during the AL championship series opener against Detroit and had surgery a week later.
The 38-year-old, who has repeatedly vowed to be ready for opening day, played in his first big league spring training game on March 9 as a designated hitter. He returned to shortstop four days later, then played consecutive games on March 15 and 16 before inflammation kept him out of the lineup.
He received an anti-inflammatory injection Wednesday and had four at-bats as a DH Saturday in a minor league exhibition game.
"I know Derek extremely well, and I can read his face," Cashman said. "And his face today tells me that the reality of his circumstances is starting to sink in, and the disabled list might be necessary. I told him what I think, and he didn't fight me on it. That's reality."
Jeter is 3 for 11 with a double in five spring training games. New York could put him on the DL backdated to Friday, meaning he could be activated on April 6, when the Yankees are at Detroit.
"It's a goal, it doesn't mean an absolute," Cashman said. "We'll respond to how he's feeling. That's all we can do. At some point this will be behind him."
Cashman wants Jeter to be available to play the field when he's on the active roster.
"We have to get him to be able to play shortstop," Cashman said. "I don't think it's going to get him healthy DHing for us."
Jeter has not been on the DL for opening day since 2001, when he missed the first four games after straining his right quadriceps during a spring training game that March 16. Two years later, he dislocated his left shoulder in the opener during a collision at third base with Toronto catcher Ken Huckaby, who was covering the bag. Jeter was sidelined until May 13.
Seeking their 18th playoff berth in 19 years, the Yankees' batting order figure to be missing almost half its regulars when the season starts.
Rodriguez isn't expected back until after the All-Star break following left hip surgery on Jan. 16. Teixeira hasn't ruled out missing the first two months of the season because of a partially torn tendon sheath in his right wrist, an injury sustained while taking swings off a tee with the U.S. at the World Baseball Classic on March 5. Granderson is expected to be out until the first week of May after breaking his right forearm when he was hit by a pitch from Toronto's J.A. Happ on Feb. 24 in his first spring training at-bat.
In addition, New York allowed Nick Swisher, Raul Ibanez, Russell Martin and Eric Chavez to depart as free agents.