A lot of the color commentary in today's Rays-Sox game is focused on how Tampa Bay has "overcome the culture of losing year-in, year-out".
Here is today's Rays starting lineup, along with when each player joined the Rays' major-league club:
Akinori Iwamura (2007)
B.J. Upton (2004)
Carlos Pena (2007) - Replaced by Willy Aybar (2008)
Evan Longoria (2008)
Carl Crawford (2002)
Cliff Floyd (2008)
Dioner Navarro (mid-2006)
Gabe Gross (mid-2008)
Jason Bartlett (2008)
James Shields (mid-2006)
In six out of ten instances, the Rays have been better than .500 since that player joined the team. Two others were added in mid-2006; they've hardly suffered to get this far. Four of the batters (five counting Aybar) have never been on a Rays team that won fewer than 97 games.
I'm just sayin'.
ADDENDUM: Look at the 2005 Tampa page on BB-Ref. Two players from that team are still around: Crawford and Scott Kazmir. (Trever Miller left, then came back in 2008; Jonny Gomes is not on the ALDS roster.) No one else even made a cameo appearance on both teams. That's an amazing turnover, and people need to stop talking like the 2008 edition is the same hapless team from five years ago.