Takeaways From Tampa Bay Rays’ Winter Ball Results Part 1

By Robbie Knopf
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Sep 15, 2014; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Alex Colome (37) throws a pitch against the New York Yankees at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

With pitchers and catchers reporting in under a month, the Winter Ball season is nearing its close. Overall, 38 Tampa Bay Rays players and prospects got into games between the Arizona Fall League, Australian Baseball League, Dominican Winter League, Mexican Pacific League, Roberto Clemente Professional Baseball League (in Puerto Rico), and the Venezuelan Winter League. Their results varied, but there are quite a few things we can learn.

Let’s go through some of the notable players and talk about what effect, if any, that their Winter Ball performance should have on our outlook of them moving forward. There is an interesting mix of players here–everything from big leaguers for next season to low-level prospects to minor league signings–so hopefully we will gain insight on multiple levels into the Rays’ 2015 hopes and the team’s future.

We’ll start today with Justin O’Conner, Alex Colome, Juan Francisco, Tommy Coyle, and Jhan Marinez.