Tampa Bay Rays: Clearing the Hurdles, 2019 Retrospective Part Two

By Seth Carter
Charlie Morton (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Charlie Morton (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /
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Brandon Lowe (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /

Brandon Lowe hit 17 homers in just 296 at-bats. Willy Adames posted a 4.2 rWAR with 20 homers. Ji-Man Choi hit 19 home runs with a .363 OBP. Austin Meadows finished 14th in MVP voting. The Rays had so many players step up in 2019 it overshadowed any setbacks they might have had due to injury, regression, or injury-induced regression.

It leads you to wonder who will step up for the Rays in 2020? Will all of these guys continue to progress as Major Leaguers. One thing is for sure, there is a ton of young talent on this loaded roster.

Rays fans have a lot to look forward to in 2020 as this group of young players puts another year of experience and success under their belts.

The Yankees may have added Gerrit Cole but Tampa has a healthy starting rotation that will be set on defending the ERA crown. The Yankees might have lived up to the “Bronx Bomber” moniker in 2019, but the Rays have added firepower from San Diego with Hunter Renfroe, and even reached across the pond and brought back one of Japan’s best sluggers, Yoshi Tsutsugo. A healthy Brandon Lowe and Yandy Diaz and the Rays have a recipe for success, even against the Evil Empire.

Blake Snell still had a solid FIP of 3.32, nearly one whole point lower than his season ERA. His strikeout numbers were still elite among starting pitchers. There’s plenty of reason to believe Snell will bounce back to his Cy Young form in 2020. This would provide the Rays with to potential Cy Young candidates (and perhaps three if Glasnow is as good as he looked in 2019).

dark. Next. Rays decade in review

So, consume your beverages safely and contently, knowing the Rays have the firepower and the health to take the AL East in 2020. Cheers!