OF Josh Lowe Recalled from AAA Durham
By Josh Jacobs
After beginning the season on the Major League Roster and then being sent down, The Tampa Bay Rays have recalled OF Josh Lowe from AAA Durham and optioned RHP Luke Bard.
One of the top prospects in the Rays system, Lowe began the season slashing .188/.257/.344 and was struggling to keep up with the level of pitching at the big league level. Expected to be a major part of the Rays lineup this season, there was hope that one more stint in AAA would be what the outfielder needed.
In 157 PA, Lowe bounced back in a huge way, slashing .299/.382./.540 with 6 HR and 35 RBI. Lowe's ability to mash the ball began to show again, and the most encouraging sign for Rays brass was an improvement in his strikeout rate. Lowe has the potential to become a middle of the order kind of bat for this Rays lineup, and his brief demotion may have done the trick to get him back on track.
The 44th ranked prospect in baseball could be a huge boost to a Rays team that has been struggling as of late. Tampa Bay is 3-7 in their last 10 games, and their team OPS has fallen to 26th in baseball, sitting at .668 The only teams that trail the Rays in OPS are the Royals, Pirates, Tigers, and Athletics, teams no where near the playoff hunt.
Already 13 games back in the American League East and holding on tightly to the third Wild Card spot, the club needs to figure out its offense and fast. With Wander Franco, Brandon Lowe, and Mike Zunino all on the IL, the team has been struggling to fill their production. When those players return, the offense should receive a major boost, but the club cannot keep digging a hole in the meantime.
Rays fans and management hope that Lowe's return to the big league club brings the club the jolt of offense they need to get back to winning baseball, as well as propel Lowe into the kind of player they have been anticipating him being for years now