Friday is the deadline for teams to set their 40-man rosters ahead the Rule 5 Draft. (They also have to set their Triple-A and Double-A rosters for the minor league phase.) As it stands, the Tampa Bay Rays have a full 40-man roster with several top prospects not yet protected from other teams. In short, expect several moves to be made between then and now.
Blake Snell, Taylor Guerrieri, Jake Faria, Taylor Motter, and one or two others are expected to be added to the roster by the deadline. Yet with nary a roster spot to play with, the front office is going to have to trim some of the dead wood to create multiple openings. Who could be dropped from the roster, or dealt, in order to protect the handful of top prospects? Let’s take a quick look.
Daniel Nava (Non-tender candidate)
Joey Butler (DFA candidate)
Desmond Jennings (Trade candidate)
James Loney (Trade candidate)
Kirby Yates (DFA candidate)
Brandon Gomes (Non-tender candidate)
Matt Andriese (DFA candidate)
Grayson Garvin (injured; Non-tender candidate)
J.P. Arencibia (Non-tender candidate)
Rene Rivera (Non-tender candidate)
Luke Maile (DFA candidate)
Opening Series schedule change
According to a tweet from MLB Communications (seen below), the Rays season opener has been moved up a day, as they will now be one of six teams to play on Sunday, April 3. Tampa Bay will also be included as part of ESPN’s Opening Day package.
ESPN will cover 7 Opening Day games during first two days of 2016 regular season on Sunday, 4/3 & Monday, 4/4. pic.twitter.com/VItDXzA7RU
— MLB Communications (@MLB_PR) November 19, 2015
All four games of the Opening Series against the Toronto Blue Jays will move up a day (as follows):
Sunday, April 3 — 4:05 p.m.
Monday, April 4 — 7:10 p.m.
Tuesday, April 5 — 7:10 p.m.
Wednesday, April 6 — 1:10 p.m.