The first installment of our evaluation of Tampa Bay Rays position players relative to the rest of the American League East in 2020. Today we focus on second base.
The Tampa Bay Rays are in a great spot at second base with Brandon Lowe making the All-Star team in his rookie campaign. On the farm, the Rays boast top prospects like Vidal Brujan and Xavier Edwards.
Not every team in the AL East has had such recent prosperity at second base. So, come along as we preview the keystone for each team in the AL East in 2020. On Deck: Tampa Bay Rays
Other AL East 2B Team Previews:
Tampa Bay Rays
Tampa Bay Rays Fangraphs 2020 Projected WAR: 2.8
Fangraphs has the Rays production projected as the second-highest in the division, next only to the Yankees and their MVP candidate D.J. LeMahieu. Tampa’s captain of the keystone finished his rookie season with some standout numbers. Lowe led the Rays in line-drive percentage last season with 26.9% of his batted balls scorching the air like a laser beam blast.
Lowe hit the injured list in July with a bruise on his leg from a foul ball. Unfortunately, he wouldn’t play again. He was on pace for 11 defensive-runs saved at second base last season, prior to suffering a season-ending quad injury in a rehab assignment in Triple-A.
Despite only playing in 82 games last season, he finished third in Rookie of the Year voting and represented Tampa in the All-Star game. He smashed 17 homers in just 296 at-bats in 2019.
Lowe looks to continue to show off his power in 2020. Lowe slugged .519 last season in the big leagues and has a career slugging percentage of .596 in Triple-A.
With Brandon Lowe, the power is for real. He brings the glove and the bat. The dome at Tropicana Field may fall well below this young slugger’s ceiling.