Even though Spring Training is coming to a close, the Tampa Bay Rays are still looking for a right handed bat to come off the bench. We can add former New York Yankees prospect Rob Refsnyder to the list of players they are considering.
The Tampa Bay Rays have had an eye out for a right handed bat that could play either first or second. Likewise, they have been looking for an outfielder with options remaining, preferably one that also hits right handed. Considering the Rays begin play in five days, that is still a sizable shopping list.
Meanwhile, the New York Yankees seem to be unsure of what to do with former top prospect Rob Refsnyder. He was considered to be a bat first player without a position on the diamond, with the Yankees trying him at second, first, and both corner outfield spots. Unfortunately, at least last year, Refsnyder’s bat did not flourish as expected, with just a .258/.328/.309 batting line.
However, Refsnyder does have a strong minor league track record. In his five seasons, he has produced a .293/.379/.429 batting line, hitting 116 doubles and stealing 61 bases. Given the number of positions that he has played, and that track record of success in the minors, it is understandable that the Rays would have interest in his services.
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In fact, in several ways, Refsnyder would be a perfect fit for what the Rays have been looking for. He could, theoretically, serve in another super utility role for the team. And, he is a right handed bat with a bit of pop and some speed, which is what the Rays want.
There are two possible drawbacks when it comes to Refsnyder, however. First, he has never played in center, an important problem with the Rays looking for a backup for Kevin Kiermaier. Second, the Rays and Yankees have made all of two trades, although the second trade came just about a year ago. So, it is possible that those few transactions between the teams would not be as much of an issue.
It even seems as though the Yankees know of the Rays interest in Refsnyder, as one could say that he was given an audition before the team’s front office. He entered the game in the fifth inning in left, then shifted to right in the sixth. Along the way, he hit a double and draw a walk. As far as auditions go, it was a pretty solid one.
The Tampa Bay Rays are looking for a right handed bat. Rob Refsnyder could be a nice fit.