No matter what you call him, B.J. Upton is one of the best players in Tampa Bay Rays history
By Rylan Stiles
The Tampa Bay Rays have had a line of quality position players in the teams 20 year history. The list starts with B.J. Upton.
In the same way we did the all time pitchers, all time managers, and now all time catchers, it is time for the all time position players in Tampa Bay Rays history.
Starting with B.J. Upton at number five, this list will carry on until the end of the month, with a new name revealed every day. As always, let your voice be heard by dropping comments below on each selection on what you agree with or disagree with. You can also voice your opinion on Twitter!
B.J. Upton, who went by his Government name of Melvin for a while but starting this offseason switched back to B.J. Upton, only went by B.J. in his time with the Rays.
He logged 966 games in the Rays outfield and saw over five thousand plate appearances. Upton debuted at age 19 in August of 2004 against the Boston Red Sox where he got his first base knock in 2004. He was drafted with the second pick by the Tampa Bay Rays in the 2002 draft.
Ironically, his last professional game was October 2016 at age 32 against, you guessed it the Boston Red Sox.
In 2007, B.J. Upton enjoyed his best year at the plate, turning in a .300 average, .386 on base percentage, and a .508 slugging percentage. Upton plated 82 runs, with 4 stolen bases. However, those stats were only in 129 games.
During the 2008 season, Upton played in his third most games logging 145 games played and a career high in plate appearances. That season he slashed for a line of .273/.383/.401 and stole a career high 44 bags with only 16 caught stealing. Upton also enjoyed a career high in walks that season, with the least amount of strikeouts he has ever had when playing at least 100 games.
In the field, Upton was incredible, and that plays into his career 16.5 WAR. Upton is ninth in Rays history with a 15.6 WAR with the franchise.
Leave below your thoughts on B.J. Upton, would you have him higher or lower than five? Please do not make me lose my mind Upton here, Upton here. (Also, thank me for waiting until the end to make that joke.