As I wrote previously, the Tampa Bay Rays have promoted prodigious hitting prospect, first baseman Nate Lowe.
In order to make room for Lowe on the 25-man roster, Christian Arroyo has been optioned back to Triple-A Durham, while RHP Andrew Moore has been designated for assignment in order to make room on the 40-man roster.
Citing a need for left-handed power, with Joey Wendle and Austin Meadows mend on the IL, Lowe boasts plus-plus power — something he was able to tap into a season ago when he slashed .330 BA/.416 OBP/.568 SLG/.984 OPS across three minor league levels (topping out at Triple-A Durham). In 2018, Lowe went on an extra-base tear, hitting 27 home runs, 32 doubles, and a triple. He also collected a 12.3% walk rate against an excellent 16.2% strikeout rate. This season, the 23-year-old Lowe was off to an excellent start at Durham, where he slashed a .300 BA/.444 OBP/.543 SLG/.987 OPS line with three home runs, eight doubles, 17 walks and 19 strikeouts across 90 plate appearances.
Lowe is not a burner on the basepaths and he is limited to first base on the defensive spectrum, yet his situational slash lines — .313 BA/.395 OBP/.484 SLG/.879 OPS vs. lefties and .338 BA/.425 OBP/.608 SLG/1.033 slash vs. righties — speak to the thought that he has the potential to be a true everyday option for Tampa Bay at first base and/or designated hitter.
As Steve Adams (MLB Trade Rumors) wrote, the possibility that Lowe could be sent back to Triple-A Durham is realistic, especially when Meadows and Wendle return from the IL.
The maximum amount of service time that Lowe would be able to accrue this season is now 155 days, meaning he’ll fall shy of the requisite 172 days to notch a full season. Because of that, he’ll be controllable through the end of the 2025 campaign if he’s in the big leagues for good, and he’s also in line to be a surefire Super Two player after the 2021 season. That said, it’s still possible that he’ll be optioned back to the minors at some point and alter those trajectories.— Steve Adams
True to form, the Rays hope Lowe will make an instant impact, and he has been slotted into the five-hole as the DH in tonight’s lineup. You can see that lineup below.
Rays 4/28/19 Starting Lineup
- B. Lowe 2B
- Pham LF
- Choi 1B
- Diaz 3B
- N. Lowe DH
- Garcia RF
- Kiermaier CF
- Robertson SS
- Perez C
- Stanek Right-Handed Opener
— You can read about the series in our preview.
— If I must embed a Marc Topkin tweet…