- On Wil Myers: Monday marked the beginning of the Rays Winter Development Camp, where many of the top prospects convene beneath the big top to sharpen their skills, etc. Rays uber prospects, Taylor Guerrieri and Wil Myers, were among the 30 prospects that attended the camp. “When I was traded it didn’t feel any different to me,” Myers said Tuesday. “But now finally being here, obviously having new stuff on, it’s really exciting to be part of this trade.” The Shields/Davis trade being the one mentioned above.
- On testing positive for foreign substances: We also heard tell of another Rays prospect that was/will be suspended for alleged drug-related issues. The unnamed player was the seventh within the Rays farm system to be suspended in the last year. Yeesh. The Rays Executive VP Andrew Friedman addressed the subject saying, “Obviously we’re disappointed in the number of suspensions.” and “we have to remember that these are young kids and as much as you try to educate them, mistakes will happen. The important part is that they learn from them. We will tolerate guys making mistakes, we’ll talk through it again, and it’s incumbent upon them to learn from their mistakes and make sure it doesn’t happen again.”
- On Josh Sale: Speaking of suspended Rays prospects, It was reported that the recently suspended OF Josh Sale still does not understand how he tested positive for a foreign substance, resulting in a 50-game suspension. He still has 40 games left to serve, and reportedly will participate in spring training while staying in extended spring for the first six weeks of the 2013 minor-league season.
- On arbitration: The Rays are hoping to settle the outstanding arbitration cases with Sam Fuld, Ryan Roberts, Matt Joyce, and Jeff Niemann before Friday’s deadline.
- On acquiring another bat in the lineup: Shocker, the Rays are still looking to bolster the offense with another bat. Friedman noted that they’re looking for either a primary DH or a player with positional flexibility. They’ll more than likely seek someone out through free agency rather than through trade.
- On Mike Morse: We wrote about Mike Morse a week ago. More so, we wrote how he could be a candidate to fill the Rays right-handed first base needs. MLB Trade Rumors reported that, “The Red Sox talked to the Nationals about Mike Morse but Washington’s asking price was too high.” I’d reckon that if he’s too expensive for them, we may as well kiss any prospects of him joining the Rays goodbye. Back to the drawing board.
- On David Price: According to Fox Sports John Paul Morosi, “David Price‘s one-year deal with the Rays was structured in a way that both saved Price several hundred thousand dollars in taxes and also gave the Rays the ability to potentially save $4MM in salary deferred to Price in 2014 if the southpaw is dealt by then.”
- On Zorilla, Rodey, Peralta, and Molina: ESPN is reporting that four Rays will be representing the US (Zobrist), Puerto Rico (Molina, along with his brother Yadier), and the Dominican Republic (Rodney and Peralta) respectively, in the World Baseball Classic. The WBC is slated to begin March 7.
In the spirit of full disclosure, I am a big fan of Noah Pransky. He, by way of his blog the Shadow of the Stadium, consistently calls things like he sees them. Pransky offers an important and valuable counter voice to those that think the only reasonable solution to the Rays stadium saga is a brand new water-front facility in downtown Tampa.
His pieces (more times than not) make strides in getting others to remember that this topic, along with others, are not solely black and white issues, and elicit objective discussion.
Pranksy wrote a piece today titled, Tribune Misleads on Stadium Saga, where he asserts that though it may not have been intentional, one little snippet from a Tampa Tribune article may have been enough to shape others opinions on the stadium saga.
Noah goes on to question the assertion of the economic feasibility of a new facility on either side of the bay, while also arguing that the ABC Coalition included the Gateway region in St. Petersburg as a potential site for a new facility, along with other sites in Hillsborough; a fact that was conveniently glossed over in the Tribune, potentially swaying readers in believing that the only solution is to break ground across the bay. Well done, Noah!
I highly recommend reading Pransky’s article and following his blog. If you are like us and would rather have a productive argument, I can’t think of a better place to start.
Make sure you check out our Sound Cloud account, especially during the season. Aptly named X-Rays Spex Radio, we’ll upload our podcasts, audio communique’s, and any other (ir)relevant songs and/or bric-a-brac (un)fit to fill the airwaves.
Hello dear readers, we genuinely hope you like the new site. We’ve got a lust that can only be quenched by more followers. That said, we’ve put together Tumblr and Google+ pages to accompany our already burgeoning social media presence on the internet. You can now follow us via the aforementioned platforms, as well as Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit. Connect with us via the link tab/buttons in the top right-hand corner of this here site.
We’re also working on putting together a podcast and a means to cull together other random audio tid-bits…an X-Rays Spex radio of sorts. Both will be available via a streaming audio site like Sound Cloud. Be expecting that in the near future.
We will not stop until we dominate your internet browser with at least seven different sites. I kid, I kid…or do I?
The Rays signed three players to minor league contracts Thursday; former Rays catcher and coach Craig Albernaz, outfielder Jason Bourgeois, and RHP JD Martin. All three were extended invites to Spring Training. Additionally, four other minor leaguers were extended Spring Training invites; right-handed relievers Marquis Fleming and Kirby Yates, southpaw Adam Liberatore, and catcher Mark Thomas.
I suppose it would be more appropriate to say that the Rays re-signed Craig Albernaz after releasing him in September 2012. Albernaz, 30, has been a part of the Rays organization, in one form or another, since 2006.
31 year-old outfielder, Jason Bourgeois, was initially drafted by the Texas Rangers in the 2nd round of the 2000 amateur draft. Bourgeois has spent time with the White Sox, Brewers, Astros and Royals, bouncing around the middle infield and outfield over the course of his career. He’s certainly not a power-hitter by any stretch of the imagination, hitting two homers in 463 career at-bats, while driving in 27 runs. His offensive value lies in his prowess on the base paths. Bourgeois swiped 31 bags in 37 attempts in 2011, while crossing the plate 30 times. He posted a .294 BA/.323 OBP/.357 SLG/.680 slash line in that season, while striking out 24 times in 238 at-bats. Bourgeois has posted a career .261 BA/.306 OBP/.324 SLG/.630 OPS slash line, boasting a 10.3% strikeout percentage. When he makes contact and gets on base, Bourgeois can do some damage.
JD Martin was a first round draft pick in the 2001 amateur draft, initially picked up by the Cleveland Indians. Martin spent parts of eight seasons in the Indians system before joining the Nationals where he made 24 big-league starts. He spent the better part of the 2012 season in the Marlins organization, splitting his time between the starting rotation and the bullpen. Matt Eddy of Baseball America calls Martin a “control specialist (who) has (a) 1.3 BB/9 rate over 382 Triple-A innings.” He also has a handful of solid pitches; an upper-80’s fastball, a variety of breaking balls, and a changeup. RJ Anderson of the Process Report noted,
Martin figures to serve as organizational depth, though his location and role are presently indeterminable. The safe money would be on him joining the Durham rotation, but the Rays have a number of young starters in line for Triple-A assignments. Chris Archer, Alex Torres, Jake Odorizzi, and Alex Colome should start in Durham. The intrigue is whether Martin, Matt Buschmann, or someone else, like Mike Montgomery, takes the fifth spot.