Tampa Bay Rays 2020 Player Profile: Charlie Morton

Charlie Morton (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)
Charlie Morton (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images) /

Tampa Bay Rays 2020 player profile on star pitcher, Charlie Morton.

The Tampa Bay Rays signed Charlie Morton to a two-year, $30 million deal prior to last season. His contract set a franchise record for most money committed to a free-agent pitcher. He proved to be a wise expense in 2019 as he finished third in the AL Cy Young voting.

Charlie Morton
Position: SP
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Height: 6-5
Weight: 215lb
Birthdate: 11/12/1983
Birthplace: Flemington, NJ
Signed to a two-year, $30 million contract through 2020. Vesting option for 2021.
2019 Salary: $15,000,000
2020 Salary: $15,000,000

2019 Stats
WAR: 5.0
Wins: 16
Losses: 6
Winning %: .727
ERA: 3.05
Games: 33
Innings Pitched: 194.2
Strikeouts: 240
Earned Runs: 71
ERA+: 146
FIP: 2.81
WHIP: 1.08
HR/9: 0.7
BB/9: 2.6

VS LHB: .227/.299/.383
VS RHP .202/.266/.296

Fun Facts

  • Morton entered the league in 2008 with the Atlanta Braves. Between 2008-2016 he had a 4.54 ERA with only 630 strikeouts in 893 innings pitched. He was a groundball pitcher before going to Houston in 2017.
  • Between 2008-2016 Morton had a 1.441 WHIP, gave up 3.4 BB/9, and struck out 6.3 batters per nine.
  • Between 2017-2019 between the ages of 33-35, Morton posted a 3.24 ERA, lowered his walks per nine to 3.0, and saw an incredible jump in strikeouts with 10.7 strikeouts per nine frames.
  • The top three Cy Young finalists in the American League last season were Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole, and Charlie Morton.
  • Gerrit Cole is set to earn $36 million in 2020.
  • Justin Verlander is set to earn $33 million in 2020.
  • Charlie Morton is set to earn $15 million in 2020.

2020 Steamer Projections

  • 3.50 ERA
  • 192.0 IP
  • 221 Ks
  • 64 BBs
  • 32 Starts

Charlie Morton looks to lead the Rays’ talented pitching staff into another battle for the AL East. The Yankees have made some major moves and are expecting healthy seasons from their sluggers Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, and everyone else.

The Rays have responded with more cost-efficient yet effective moves adding some power to the offense. Erik Neander and the front office are depending on Morton to lead the charge of a youthful and talented staff.

If Morton, Blake Snell, and Tyler Glasnow are all healthy then the Rays could have the best three in all of baseball.

The Rays did discuss monitoring Morton’s workload a little more closely this season as his production took a slight hit in the second half of 2019.

His ERA went from a stellar 2.32 in the first half to a 4.06 in the second half. Opposing hitters went from a .196 in the first half of the season to a .239 in the second.

The second half still wasn’t terrible and the Rays are a smart franchise. I expect another great season from the Rays’ ace pitcher.

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What do you expect from Morton in 2020?