Rays Prospects

Tampa Bay Rays: Catching Up with the Top Prospects

By David Hill
Nov 5, 2016; Surprise, AZ, USA; West pitcher Brent Honeywell of the Tampa Bay Rays during the Arizona Fall League Fall Stars game at Surprise Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 5, 2016; Surprise, AZ, USA; West pitcher Brent Honeywell of the Tampa Bay Rays during the Arizona Fall League Fall Stars game at Surprise Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /
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Mandatory Credit: Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports /

Jake Bauers (75th overall)

Jake Bauers made quite the impression during Spring Training for the Tampa Bay Rays. His home runs were the stuff of legend, leading to the thought that he could end up finding his way to the Rays relatively quickly, especially given that Logan Morrison was hardly great last year.

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Instead, Morrison has proven to be a bargain in free agency, with a .275/.377/.538 batting line and seven home runs in his 106 plate appearances. He has been a major part of the Rays offense this year, exceeding expectations and securing his spot on the roster, at least through this season.

Bauers, meanwhile, has struggled in his time in Durham. Splitting his time between first base and left field, he has posted a .237/.351/.312 batting line, hitting just one home run and four doubles. He has also struck out in 22.5% of his plate appearances, a large spike from his career 15.9% strikeout mark.

However, not everything is negative for Bauers first trip through AAA. he is walking at a 14.4% rate, an improvement over his career 10.8% mark. It does, however, beg the question as to whether or not Bauers is being too passive in his first sting in Durham. If he attacks the zone more, he could get back on track as a possible cornerstone player for the Rays.

Next: Rays seeing Odorizzi break out

The Tampa Bay Rays have seen their top prospects get off to a slow start this season, but that could turn around quickly. Right now, it seems to just be a matter of adjusting to that next level and making those needed improvements.

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