After clearing waivers, the left handed pitcher will enter spring training on the outside looking in.
Hoby Milner lost his roster spot last week at the hands of the Rule 5 Draft deadline. The Tampa Bay Rays chose to designate him, Oliver Drake, and C.J. Cron for assignment in favor of their highly touted prospects.
Yesterday, the righty Oliver Drake was claimed by the Toronto Blue Jays and former Rays slugging first baseman C.J. Cron was claimed by the Minnesota Twins. Cron will rejoin Rocco Baldelli in the Twin Cities, becoming the second powerful Rays first baseman in two years to end up in a Twins uniform.
Logan Morrison was signed by the Twins last year and struggled mightily, finishing the year with a .186 average and 15 homers across 300 at bats. The Twins are hoping that C.J. Cron doesn’t make a pattern of Tampa Bay sluggers struggling in Minnesota.
Oliver Drake is an interesting case, as he appeared with 5 teams last year, one of those being Toronto who just claimed him. He never appeared with the Rays as he was claimed this month. There is a chance that he doesn’t make the opening day roster and is again released and if that happens, the Rays may add him yet again.
As for Holby Milner, he expectedly passed through waivers without being claimed and as a result the Rays were able to outright him to the minor leagues where he will receive an invite to spring training in Port Charlotte. His best chance at cracking the big league roster would be as a lefty specialist as he held left handed hitters to a .177 opponents average in his short big league career.
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In 2018, Milner only appeared in 14 games, ten in Philadelphia and four in Tampa Bay. The southpaw with an odd delivery was less than impressive at both stops. He only threw 7.1 innings in those 14 appearances. In total he finished with a 7.36 ERA and an even worse FIP of 8.75. His 9.8 strikeouts per 9 do show promise however and it will be interesting to see if he can sneak on the 25 man roster come Opening Day.
On a separate note, I have reviewed the minor league seasons of three Rays minor league affiliates with the rest to follow in the coming days. Here are the links to the reviews of both of their Dominican Summer League teams and their Gulf Coast League team.