Rays News

5 Rays That Will Surprise Everyone in 2019

By Patrick Davenport
ANAHEIM, CA - MAY 19: Daniel Robertson #28 of the Tampa Bay Rays hits a grand slam homerun in the second inning during the MLB game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium on May 19, 2018 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)
ANAHEIM, CA - MAY 19: Daniel Robertson #28 of the Tampa Bay Rays hits a grand slam homerun in the second inning during the MLB game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium on May 19, 2018 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
(Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images) /

#4 Michael Perez

Michael Perez was acquired in the Matt Andriese trade with the Diamondbacks in July and immediately made an impact while Wilson Ramos was injured. He is a contact-focused catcher that showed a good ability to hit line drives.

There are a few holes in Perez’s game that need to be ironed out during 2019, as had an unreasonably low 3.8% walk rate in his short stint with the Rays before being injured, as well as having a streaky bat that will need to be more consistent going forward. But what did stand out was his ability on defence.

He has an accurate arm that caught around 50% of runners over the past two years. He also has good pitching ability and has decent athleticism behind the plate. When you bare in mind that ‘Mykii’ is going to get to learn behind Mike Zunino, one of the game’s premier defensive catchers, Perez is only going to improve and adjust to major league pitching.

Don’t expect him to be an all-star by any stretch of the imagination, but Perez has a lot to prove this season if he wants to secure a steady job as Zunino’s backup, as fellow up and comer Nick Ciuffo is hot on Mykii’s heels. However, I  predict that he will develop in leaps and bounds over 2019.

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