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Tampa Bay Rays: Way Too Early Roster Prediction

By Austin Reimann
ATLANTA, GA - AUGUST 29: Joey Wendle #18 and Willy Adames #1 of the Tampa Bay Rays react after their 8-5 win over the Atlanta Braves at SunTrust Park on August 29, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - AUGUST 29: Joey Wendle #18 and Willy Adames #1 of the Tampa Bay Rays react after their 8-5 win over the Atlanta Braves at SunTrust Park on August 29, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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ST. PETERSBURG, FL JULY 21: Kevin Cash of the Tampa Bay Rays watches the game against the Miami Marlins at Tropicana Field on July 21, 2017 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Joseph Garnett Jr./Getty Images)
ST. PETERSBURG, FL JULY 21: Kevin Cash of the Tampa Bay Rays watches the game against the Miami Marlins at Tropicana Field on July 21, 2017 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Joseph Garnett Jr./Getty Images) /

Had I predicted the Tampa Bay Rays roster a week ago it would already be wrong. I didn’t expect the addition of Mike Zunino or the subtraction of Mallex Smith. But that is why it is called a prediction. Now with a little more clarity regarding the outfield and catching situations, lets take a crack at the 2019     25-man roster…

The prediction that follows is missing a few familiar faces from 2018, is filled with the rookies you learned to love in 2018, and even has a few surprise additions. As the Tampa Bay Rays look to reach the playoffs for the first time since 2013, I predict they will approach this offseason aggressively with an eye on the present and not so much the future.

With the recent addition of Mike Zunino, the catching situation becomes clearer, and with Mallex Smith heading back to Seattle, the 2019 outfield seems to be pretty cemented. As for the infield, I believe that it is set too, that is, with the exception of one major addition.

The most difficult aspect of this 2019 roster to predict is the pitching staff. Up to this point, the Rays only have two solidified starters and I expect them to trade for a third. They do however, have two trusted “bulk guys”. As for their pen, I expect it to be filled with talent the Rays already possess.

Remember, this is just a prediction and if I were Erik Neander, this is the roster I would aim for. Also, this roster hinges on the Rays’ willingness to part with talented prospects in an effort to acquire impact players that can help the team compete today.

When discussing the starting rotation I will discuss my number one option as well discussing a backup option. Hopefully, by the end, you will have a better idea of what the 2019 Tampa Bay Rays might look like… Lets get started!

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