Rays Colored Glasses: Spring Training Wrap Up


Here is a wrap up of all things Rays spring training:

Final Record: 15-14-2
Home: 10-5-1 (including 1 game at Tropicana Field)
Road: 5-9-1

Best Hitter: Ben Zobrist. He hit .292 (14 for 48), led the team with four homers and tied with 10 RBI. Casey Kotchman or Manny Ramirez also had impressive springs.

Worst Hitter: Ray Olmedo (.074, 1 for 26). Of the regulars, there really wasn’t a bad spring performance. Matt Joyce hit .200 (11 for 55), but that’s about it.

Best Pitcher: Joel Peralta. He has had a fantastic spring. Over ten innings, the reliever didn’t give up a run and only allowed up seven base runners.

Worst Pitcher: Wade Davis (1-1 record, 6.98 ERA), although in his last start he only gave up a run in four innings.

Player most likely to be sent down: Dan Johnson. He won the first base job this spring even though he was clearly outhit by Casey Kotchman. He’s a career .243 hitter without Carlos Pena’s power and he has gotten worse as time as gone on. Look for Zobrist to get more starts at first (especially against lefties) until a better option becomes available.

Player most likely to be called up: Robinson Chironos–a catcher who came back to the Rays as part of the Matt Garza trade. He could be a solution to the first base problem if the Rays want to get creative. This is pure speculation based on need. The Rays have more catching options than they do at first base. They could conceivably have a rotation of players between the two positions trying to find the best hitters. Desmond Jennings will probably stay in the minors as long as the combo of Johnny Damon and Manny Ramirez is working.

Player who didn’t make the roster I’m most excited about: Desmond Jennings. How can a Rays fan not be excited about Jennings? He’s billed as the second coming of Carl Crawford. At this point, he’s strictly a speedster as his .278/.362/.393 line in AAA Durham last year will attest. What is most impressive is his 37 steals in 41 attempts for an outstanding 90 percent success ratio. He was brought up at the end of last year to serve as a pinch runner and defensive replacement. Hopefully, we’ll see him by mid-season this year.

Here is the Rays record verses every team in the Grapefruit league.

Baltimore: 0-3
Boston: 3-0-1
Florida: 2-0
Houston: 1-0
Minnesota: 0-3
Philadelphia: 2-1
Pittsburgh: 3-4
NY Yankees: 1-1-1 and a rain-cancelled game
Toronto: 3-2

They did not play Detroit, Atlanta, Washington, New York Mets or St. Louis.