When the Tampa Bay Rays signed Wilson Ramos, they knew it would be a while before he suited up in a game for them. Currently, Ramos is targeting a return to the diamond in the early part of June.
Wilson Ramos was in the midst of a career year when it ended abruptly. He tore his ACL, ending his 2016 campaign and leaving the beginning of his 2017 season in doubt. That injury also factored in to a slower market for the All Star catcher, allowing the Tampa Bay Rays to sign him to a two year, $12 Million deal this offseason.
Now, the Rays may have a time frame of when to expect Ramos to return. While accepting his Silver Slugger award yesterday, Ramos stated that he is working hard to come back to the field. While he may not have a specific time frame, and is still in the midst of his rehab, Ramos is hoping to come back to the diamond at the beginning of June.
Such a time frame would make sense. The Rays did put Ramos on the 60 day disabled list to open a spot on the 40 man roster, meaning that he cannot return until June 1 at the earliest. If Ramos, and the Rays, feel that an early June return is the most likely outcome, then the timing of when he is eligible to return could be perfect.
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Of course, the Rays will be cautious with Ramos’ return. Chances are, we will not see him behind the plate every time he is in the lineup, as he may well get time at first and as the Rays designated hitter. However, if his breakout from last year is real, the newest catcher in Tampa Bay will be well worth the wait.
In fact, it would not take much for Ramos to be the best hitting catcher in Rays history. A repeat of his 2016 performance, where he had a .307/.354/.498 batting line with 22 homers, would be more than enough to cement his place amongst Rays backstops. Of course, given the history at the position, it is not difficult to be near the top of the list.
There may be light at the end of the tunnel in regards to the Tampa Bay Rays seeing one of their prized free agent signings return to the diamond. Wilson Ramos is targeting the beginning of June to make his debut in Tampa Bay.