After starting the season in extended spring training, Rays 2010 first round pick Joshua Sale has been called up to Low-A Bowling Green to make his season debut, as JB Long tweeted. Sale struggled in his pro debut at Rookie-level Princeton in 2011, posting just a .210/.289/.346 line 11 doubles, 3 triples, 4 homers, and 15 RBI in 60 games. There were some positives to his season, but overall his season was disaster. But the Rays saw Sale make considerable prospects and decided him to send him to full-season ball for the first time.
Sale is unorthodox, especially as a Rays prospect, because he projects as a left fielder moving forward. Long story short, he better hit. Sale was lauded before the 2010 draft for his hand-eye coordination and advanced approach at the plate, and he did draw 23 walked in 2011 compared to 41 strikeouts. Sale has shown big-time power and the ability to hit for a high average. Maybe his 2011 struggles were overblown. He was a first round pick who couldn’t get off to a good start to his pro career and began pressing after that. The Rays here are reaffirming their belief in him. They’re telling him that his 2011 struggles are behind him and that they believe that he’s a talented enough player and a composed enough person to overcome those struggles and let his natural ability come out. Sale’s upside is exactly the same as it was before. But hopefully now he can put it all together and prove to his doubters that he was a justified first round pick and a player who will be a big part of the future of the Rays.