Results tagged ‘ Carl Crawford ’

Is Desmond Jennings Still One Year Away From Being a Star?

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Desmond Jennings hasn’t played his first full season in the big leagues yet, but it doesn’t seem like he’s too far away from becoming a star. With less than a hundred big league games under his belt so far in his brief career, it’s become clear that the 25-year-old has a bright future ahead of him.

Jennings has all the tools for a successful career, but the million dollar question is when will his talents transform him into a star. He’s a potential five-tool outfielder with excellent speed, great range, some power, terrific baserunning skills, and the ability to hit for average and get on base.

Jennings burst onto the scene as a late-season call-up for the Rays last year, and immediately made an impact putting up some impressive numbers in his rookie season. In 63 games, he batted .259/.356/.449 with 25 RBI, 10 HR and 20 stolen bases.

After 16 games, it looks like Jennings is on the right track to start his 2012 season, batting .262./.319/.385 with 2 HR, 7 RBI and 3 stolen bases. Although his on-base percentage is not as high as it was last year, or probably where he’d like it to be this season, Jennings has gave the Rays the consistent leadoff guy they need thus far. It’s obviously to early to judge anything, but he definitely hasn’t been a disappointment.

Defense is another area of his game that helps show he’s gradually turning into a star in Tampa Bay. Jennings has done an outstanding job in left field ever since he’s been called up to the majors, making highlight reel catches on balls that many outfielders can’t get to. He’s also filled in a bit in center, a position that he has a legitimate future in and would make him an even more valuable player to his team.

In just his second season, there’s only one thing standing in between him and stardom. That single weakness has been contact hitting. Jennings posted a strikeout percentage of 20.6 last year, and has not yet improved this season with a percentage of 20.8. Both ratios are considered below league average, especially for leadoff hitters.

High strikeout totals are normal for young players—even young stars—in their first couple of years, which is why it shouldn’t be too much of a concern for the Rays. With ridiculously good speed and a nice line-drive stoke, good things usually happen when Jennings makes contact with the baseball. Once Jennings starts to cut down on the strikeouts, the other parts of his game will excel more than ever before.

Better contact hitting will not only effect Jennings’ overall numbers, but it can also make a huge difference in the Rays’ offense. Less strikeouts would lead to a higher OBP, which would lead to more stolen bases, which would would lead to more runners in scoring position, which would ultimately lead to more runs scored. Jennings will improve as a player and likely breakout as a star when his strikeout ratios decrease.

Jennings’ scary close similarities between former Rays superstar left fielder Carl Crawford can give us an idea of when Jennings could really start to shine at the big league level.

Both Crawford and Jennings are speedy leadoff-hitting left fielders who came into the league with somewhat similar expectations, making this a pretty good comparison, although Crawford started his career at a younger age. Amazingly, they both played 63 games in their rookie seasons and batted exactly .259. Although Crawford had 10 more RBI in his strong rookie year, Jennings probably had the better season with 11 more stolen bases, eight more homers and a much higher OBP.

Crawford started to emerge as a star in his sophomore year and first full season, stealing a league-high 55 stolen bases while batting a solid .281. Jennings is currently in his sophomore year and first full season, which is why we can expect to see him begin to rise as a young star by the end of this year.

I don’t expect Jennings to turn into one of the top leadoff men in the league as quick as Crawford did, but I would be a bit surprised if he doesn’t reach his All-Star caliber potential within the next year or so. Just like Crawford, Jennings’ great speed will be what separates him from the many talented outfielders in the American League. In addition to that, I believe his natural power could make him really something special, as well as a serious 20-40 threat as early as this year.

 

A little over a month ago on The Rays Rant, I wrote a full-year stat projection article on Desmond Jennings, predicting all of his major statistics for the 2012 season. Click here to check it out if you haven’t seen it yet.

Top 10 Rays of All-Time

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The Tampa Bay Rays have a very short, but interesting history. The franchise has changed so much in a 13-year span, probably more than any other team. It’s a team that has suffered through plenty of bad seasons, but have had some miraculous ones too. So far there aren’t any Rays jerseys hanging in Cooperstown, but the emerging young talent is looking to change that. On this list I will rank the top 10 overall-best Tampa Bay Rays players; all the way from 1998. All position players who played over 300 games for the Rays and pitchers who were on the roster for at least two seasons, are eligible for the list. This automatically excludes some star names, like Jose Canseco and Wade Boggs. Still, super stars such as Carl Crawford, Fred McGriff, and Evan Longoria highlight a great top 10.

10.) David Price- David Price has done so much in his short time in the big leagues. In just over three seasons, Price has been selected to two All Star Games, won 41 games, finished second in the 2009 Cy Young voting, and closed out Game 7 of the ALCS to win the pennant. At just 26 years old, it looks like it’s just the beginning of a great career for Price. Here are Price’s career stats:
Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB IBB SO
TBR 0 0 1.93 5 1 0 0 0 14.0 9 4 3 1 4 0 12
TBR 10 7 .588 4.42 23 23 0 0 0 128.1 119 72 63 17 54 0 102
TBR 19 6 .760 2.72 32 31 2 1 0 208.2 170 71 63 15 79 1 188
TBR 12 13 .480 3.49 34 34 0 0 0 224.1 192 93 87 22 63 5 218
4 Seasons 41 26 .612 3.38 94 89 2 1 0 575.1 490 240 216 55 200 6 520
9.) Carlos Pena- Carlos Pena was an absolute power machine in his four years as a Ray. He currently is the franchise leader in homeruns, belting out 144 dingers for the Rays. Pena not only gave the Rays great offensive production, but he also was one of the slickest defensive first basemen in the game. His Gold Glove award that he won back in 2008 is amongst a few of Pena’s accolades. He was selected to the All Star Game once, has one a Silver Slugger award, and a Comeback Player of the Year award. The best part about all his awards, is that he earned them all as Ray. Here are his career stats as member of the Rays:
G AB R H 2B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB Awards
148 490 99 138 29 46 121 1 103 142 .282 .411 .627 1.037 307 MVP-9,SS
139 490 76 121 24 31 102 1 96 166 .247 .377 .494 .871 242 MVP-9,GG
135 471 91 107 25 39 100 3 87 163 .227 .356 .537 .893 253 AS
144 484 64 95 18 28 84 5 87 158 .196 .325 .407 .732 197
566 1935 330 461 96 144 407 10 373 629 .238 .368 .516 .884 999
8.) Ben Zobrist- The Tampa Bay Rays have never had a utility man as good as Ben Zobrist. They also haven’t had much players more valuable to the team than Zobrist either. At 18.7, “Zorilla” has the fifth highest WAR (Wins Above Replacement) in the franchise’s history. Zobrist has meant so much to the club in the last few years, boosting both the defense and offense. Besides playing up to seven positions, Zobrist was also able to knock in 91 runs twice in the last three years. He’s also has double-digit homerun power and plays stellar defense, at wherever he is on the diamond. Here are his career stats:
G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB Awards
52 183 10 41 6 2 2 18 2 10 26 .224 .260 .311 .572 57
31 97 8 15 2 0 1 9 2 3 21 .155 .184 .206 .391 20
62 198 32 50 10 2 12 30 3 25 37 .253 .339 .505 .844 100
152 501 91 149 28 7 27 91 17 91 104 .297 .405 .543 .948 272 AS,MVP-8
151 541 77 129 28 2 10 75 24 92 107 .238 .346 .353 .699 191
156 588 99 158 46 6 20 91 19 77 128 .269 .353 .469 .822 276 MVP-16
604 2108 317 542 120 19 72 314 67 298 423 .257 .348 .435 .782 916

7.) B.J. Upton- B.J. Upton has proved to be one of the most valuable players to ever wear a Rays uniform. His career WAR of 19.8 is the fourth highest of all time for the franchise. He’s been a big part of the Rays’ past success, but still hasn’t played up to his full potential. Upton (along with Longoria) carried the Rays through the 2008 magical postseason run, blasting seven homeruns in the playoffs. Upton has been a huge part of the club for seven years now. His terrific speed, power, and great defense in center are all reasons why BJ is a big name in Tampa Bay. Below are Upton’s career stats:

Year G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB Awards
2004 45 159 19 41 8 2 4 12 4 15 46 .258 .324 .409 .733 65
2006 50 175 20 43 5 0 1 10 11 13 40 .246 .302 .291 .593 51
2007 129 474 86 142 25 1 24 82 22 65 154 .300 .386 .508 .894 241
2008 145 531 85 145 37 2 9 67 44 97 134 .273 .383 .401 .784 213
2009 144 560 79 135 33 4 11 55 42 57 152 .241 .313 .373 .686 209
2010 154 536 89 127 38 4 18 62 42 67 164 .237 .322 .424 .745 227
2011 153 560 82 136 27 4 23 81 36 71 161 .243 .331 .429 .759 240
7 Seasons 820 2995 460 769 173 17 90 369 201 385 851 .257 .342 .416 .759 1246

6.) Fred McGriff- Fred McGriff, the “Crime Dog”, was one of the premier sluggers of the Devil Ray era. He spent five years playing for his hometown team in Tampa Bay, starting from the ’98 Inaugural Year. The six-time All Star was the franchise’s first real good hitter, along with Hall of Famer Wade Boggs. McGriff closed out his great career strong as a Devil Ray, hitting 99 homers and batting over .290 through his five seasons. Here are his career Tampa Bay Devil Rays stats:

Year G AB R H 2B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB Awards
1998 151 564 73 160 33 19 81 7 79 118 .284 .371 .443 .815 250
1999 144 529 75 164 30 32 104 1 86 107 .310 .405 .552 .957 292
2000 158 566 82 157 18 27 106 2 91 120 .277 .373 .452 .826 256 AS
2001 97 343 40 109 18 19 61 1 40 69 .318 .387 .536 .923 184
2004 27 72 7 13 3 2 7 0 9 19 .181 .272 .306 .577 22
TBD (5 yrs) 577 2074 277 603 102 99 359 11 305 433 .291 .380 .484 .864 1004

5.) Scott Kazmir- Scott Kazmir was the ace of the Rays’ rotation in four out of his six years on the team. He was amongst the franchise’s three original farm-gown stars, including his Texas-native teammates Aubrey Huff and Carl Crawford. Kazmir was really the only starting pitching the Rays had until 2008, when the team went worst to first. Considering the Devil Rays’ lack of arms in the rotation, the two-time All Star was one of baseball most valuable pitchers for a while. Kazmir’s years are probably behind him, but he had a heck of a run with the Rays. Here are career numbers as a Ray:

Year W L W-L% ERA G IP H R HR BB IBB SO WHIP Awards
2004 2 3 .400 5.67 8 33.1 33 22 4 21 0 41 1.620
2005 10 9 .526 3.77 32 186.0 172 90 12 100 3 174 1.462 RoY-9
2006 10 8 .556 3.24 24 144.2 132 59 15 52 3 163 1.272 AS
2007 13 9 .591 3.48 34 206.2 196 91 18 89 1 239 1.379
2008 12 8 .600 3.49 27 152.1 123 61 23 70 2 166 1.267 AS
2009 8 7 .533 5.92 20 111.0 121 77 15 50 0 91 1.541
TBR (6 yrs) 55 44 .556 3.92 145 834.0 777 400 87 382 9 874 1.390

4.) Aubrey Huff- Aubrey Huff was the team’s main power source in most of his seven years as a member of the Devil Rays. Huff was an offensive machine for the team in his seasons, raking 128 homeruns and knocking in 449 runs. His solid defense at first base and ability to hit well for average, also added to his player value. Here are his stats for his Devil Rays career:

Year G AB R H 2B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB Awards
2000 39 122 12 35 7 4 14 0 5 18 .287 .318 .443 .760 54
2001 111 411 42 102 25 8 45 1 23 72 .248 .288 .372 .660 153
2002 113 454 67 142 25 23 59 4 37 55 .313 .364 .520 .884 236
2003 162 636 91 198 47 34 107 2 53 80 .311 .367 .555 .922 353 MVP-24
2004 157 600 92 178 27 29 104 5 56 74 .297 .360 .493 .853 296
2005 154 575 70 150 26 22 92 8 49 88 .261 .321 .428 .749 246
2006 131 454 57 121 25 21 66 0 50 64 .267 .344 .469 .813 213
2006 63 230 26 65 15 8 28 0 24 25 .283 .348 .461 .809 106
TBD (7 yrs) 799 3028 400 870 172 128 449 20 247 412 .287 .343 .477 .819 1444

3.) James Shields- Statistics don’t show how much “Big Game James” has meant to the Rays. More than any other Rays starter in history, Shields wins games. Especially the the big games (hence the nickname). Shields has played six seasons for the Rays, and has been a big part of the rotation for most of his short career. After a disappointing 2010 season, Shields came back with an incredible season last year. He lead the terrific young Rays pitching staff, with a 2.82 ERA and 16 wins. He finished third in the Cy Young voting, and was elected to his first All Star Game. He’s the most valuable Rays pitcher of all time, and he looks like he’s just getting better. Here are his lifetime stats:

Year W L W-L% ERA G CG IP H R ER BB IBB SO WHIP Awards
2006 6 8 .429 4.84 21 1 124.2 141 69 67 38 5 104 1.436
2007 12 8 .600 3.85 31 1 215.0 202 98 92 36 0 184 1.107
2008 14 8 .636 3.56 33 3 215.0 208 94 85 40 0 160 1.153
2009 11 12 .478 4.14 33 0 219.2 239 113 101 52 1 167 1.325
2010 13 15 .464 5.18 34 0 203.1 246 128 117 51 2 187 1.461
2011 16 12 .571 2.82 33 11 249.1 195 83 78 65 1 225 1.043 AS,CYA-3,MVP-16
6 Seasons 72 63 .533 3.96 185 16 1227.0 1231 585 540 282 9 1027 1.233

2.) Evan Longoria- Since Carl Crawford departed to Boston last winter, Longoria has been the face of the franchise. The true leader of the team; the man who’s been carrying the Rays every since his monster rookie year back in ’08. Not only is Longoria a hometown hero in Tampa, but he’s also one of the best players in all the big leagues. The 27 year-old has big-time power, amazing defense, and hits in the clutch better than any Ray ever. He’s played only four seasons in the majors, but has already blasted over 100 homers and 400 RBIs. It’s only a matter of time before Longoria becomes the best Tampa Bay Rays player ever. Here are his career stats:

Year G AB R H 2B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB Awards
2008 122 448 67 122 31 27 85 7 46 122 .272 .343 .531 .874 238 AS,MVP-11,RoY-1
2009 157 584 100 164 44 33 113 9 72 140 .281 .364 .526 .889 307 AS,MVP-19,GG,SS
2010 151 574 96 169 46 22 104 15 72 124 .294 .372 .507 .879 291 AS,MVP-6,GG
2011 133 483 78 118 26 31 99 3 80 93 .244 .355 .495 .850 239 MVP-10
4 Seasons 563 2089 341 573 147 113 401 34 270 479 .274 .360 .515 .874 1075

1.) Carl Crawford- I don’t think there’s a question of who’s the best Ray ever. Carl Crawford leads the franchise’s history in average, RBIs, runs, hits, stolen bases, WAR (36.8), and games played. All the way from 2002 to 2010, Crawford was the heart and soul of the franchise. CC was there for the good times and the bad, but was a great baseball player the whole way through.

Year G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS TB Awards
2002 63 259 23 67 11 6 2 30 9 9 41 .259 .290 .371 .661 96
2003 151 630 80 177 18 9 5 54 55 26 102 .281 .309 .362 .671 228
2004 152 626 104 185 26 19 11 55 59 35 81 .296 .331 .450 .781 282 AS
2005 156 644 101 194 33 15 15 81 46 27 84 .301 .331 .469 .800 302
2006 151 600 89 183 20 16 18 77 58 37 85 .305 .348 .482 .830 289 MVP-26
2007 143 584 93 184 37 9 11 80 50 32 112 .315 .355 .466 .820 272 AS
2008 109 443 69 121 12 10 8 57 25 30 60 .273 .319 .400 .718 177
2009 156 606 96 185 28 8 15 68 60 51 99 .305 .364 .452 .816 274 AS
2010 154 600 110 184 30 13 19 90 47 46 104 .307 .356 .495 .851 297 AS,MVP-7,GG,SS
2011 130 506 65 129 29 7 11 56 18 23 104 .255 .289 .405 .694 205
TBR (9 yrs) 1235 4992 765 1480 215 105 104 592 409 293 768 .296 .337 .444 .781 2217

Almost as good as winning the Pennant

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A better script couldn’t be written than the story of the 2011 Tampa Bay Rays. In 2008, it was a story with new “chapters” added as the magical season progressed. The sequel to that story is not 2009 or 2010, it’s this year. This year is the second year that the Rays have shocked the baseball nation. What makes this season so amazing is how the Rays earned a spot in the playoffs after this long and winding road of the regular season. An unforgettable season that will go down in baseball history because of the epic collapse of the Boston Red Sox. A team that was often a preseason favorite to win it all, after their enormous off-season. Just like in 2008, everyone wrote off the Rays in the beginning of the season. It seemed as if many criticts would prove to be right when the Rays were trailing the Wild Card by 9 games in September. The hustling and worry-free Rays then started to slowly climb back into the picture, as the pressured Red Sox were totally collapsing. It would come down to the wire, game 162, to decide who would play in October or if there would be a tiebreaker. The Rays were trailing 7-0 in the 8th, and Boston was up in the 9th with two outs and nobody on. It couldn’t more perfect than what happened on that historic night. The Rays would comeback and be saved by Dan Johnson, just like in 2008, and would walk-off by none other than Tampa Bay’s sports icon Evan Longoria. But it gets even better though. Meanwhile in Baltimore, Paplebon is trying to close out a sure win. With a 3-2 Boston lead, the O’s were down to their last out of the season with the bases empty. There would be no Irish Jig for Paplebon that night, as the Birds would smack three hits in a row for a comeback victory.

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The last hit was a catchable line-drive to left field, and guess who dropped the baseball to end their depressing season? Oh yes, it was Carl Crawford. It was just a perfect day of baseball. That night really defined the miraculous season for the Rays into a nutshell. Being down 7-0 in the 8th with their rivals an out a way from winning, the Rays once again showed the world that anything is possible in the game of baseball. Nobody would of ever thought it would all play it like this; but that’s not what the Rays needed to win. The incredible season isn’t over, as they still have another big mission in 2011. The Rays want and can bring a title to Tampa. Doing that would silence the countless critics and fans that have been putting down the Rays’ fans and stadium all year. Winning it all would surely quiet the many saying that relocation is the only option for the franchise. Last night was a step in the right direction, as the Rays stunned the Rangers with a brutal 9-0 Game 1 win in Arlington. 20111001-210315.jpg
Phenom Matt Moore was called to start the game against the huge Texas bats in just his second major league start. Just called up a few weeks ago, Moore didn’t let anyone down with a stellar outing. Seven scoreless innings in a postseason game at Arlington is absolutely remarkable. With all the momentum, it will be exciting to see what the Rays can do in the postseason. But just like in the regular season, we’ll just have to wait and see how it all plays out.

CC causing stir around Rays Republic

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Carl Crawford was the face of the franchise for the Rays for nine long years. He was a fan favorite in Tampa Bay, with his ridiculous speed, acrobatic catches, and clutch hits. The inevitable transfer came during the offseason this year, when Crawford was signed by Boston for a mammoth $ 142 million contract through 7 years. Crawford did a lot to prove that a 30-year old ballplayer could be signed for a gigantic contract like that, by having a tremendous 2010 season. Things were looking up for CC until the season actually started. Crawford started horrendous in the first two months, and still has disappointed Red Sox Nation hitting .259 in late September with a very low stolen base total. Crawford was aware of the poor season more than anyone, and recently started an ‘apologetic diary’ to Red Sox Nation. Something tells me that the $142 million contract had a little bit to do with his idea to start a diary. 20110923-115145.jpg
The diary, which is written at ESPNboston.com, basically states ‘Sorry for the year I’ve had’. But when Carl tried to elaborate, things didn’t exactly go as planned. From a reader’s standpoint, it seemed as if he was attacking Rays fans while praising Boston fans. Some controversial quotes included: If Tampa makes a miracle comeback and takes the wild card from us, I will be devastated. I definitely wouldn’t want to lose to those guys and watch them get into the playoffs while we go home. That would just be devastating to me.” Really? It’s devastating when the team that made you who you are succeeds, but when the Angels or Yankees beat you it’s fine? That wasn’t all though. Crawford also called out Rays fans: It was a bunch of haters in left field, pretty much.” But Crawford also had some words for the Red Sox fans who apparently never do any ‘heckling': You guys have been really supportive and I appreciate that.” Tell me this guy isn’t the MVP suck-up of the year. Just the fact that Crawford decided to make an ‘apologetic diary’ makes him suck-up. When Crawford said “I just want to say I’m sorry for the year I’ve had”, I don’t think that’s ‘just’ what he had to say. 20110923-115151.jpg
The truth is that the only way he is going to win over Red Sox Nation is by playing better. Sucking-up just doesn’t work in Boston. Unfortunately, it looks as CC has tarnished his reputation in Tampa. He may have got the filled seats and fan energy he asked for, but he won’t welcome anymore in the
“empty seats” of the Trop. It’s just sad what money does to good people.

Whatever happened to the Legend of Super Sam?

As of early May this season, it seemed like a new legend may have been born in Tampa Bay. Although there was plenty of talent expected out of the Matt Garza trade, Sam Fuld wasn’t exactly a highlighted name when the trade was publicly announced across the nation. For a matter of fact, Samuel “Sam” Babson Fuld was many times given the title of “….and a minor league player”. Going into Spring Training, Fuld had a lot to prove. Although Fuld wasn’t a big name, the expectations weren’t so low. Without Crawford the Rays didn’t know who their left fielder would be. They knew they had options, but they were also aware that it was very unlikely they were going to have a close replacement to Crawford in the near future. Crawford was a big blow to the Rays at first, no Ray outfielder could potentially do all the things Crawford did in the previous year. Fuld took this opportunity, and made the best out of it. Although he only batted a mild .277 in Spring Training, Maddon liked what he saw and Fuld became the Rays Opening Day starter out in left. Fuld responded to this by starting of the season with a bang, exactly the opposite of the team. As the Rays continued to struggle in April, Fuld went on a tear with a 28-hit month. His name started to grab national attention in a heart-beat, and the Rays had another young player rise up in the baseball world. 20110918-042907.jpg
His name really started to get notice when he made a nearly impossible catch against the White Sox in Chicago. In didn’t take long at all before he was dubbed “Super Sam”. Amazing catch after amazing catch was made across ballparks in America, and it was clear that his glove was going to be his signature tool in the big leagues. As his career was building, so was the Rays win column. The Rays would keep on winning, but Sam Fuld average was rapidly dipping. Fuld cooled off offensively in May, hitting a low .157 average. But his speed on the basepads and his glovework in left field kept him in the lineup, and his legend alive. Although these things continued through the season, Fuld was just not getting it done at the plate. Maddon was pretty much forced to remove him from his everyday-starter role, and the legend began to slowly disintegrate. Then there were injuries and things got even worse for Fuld. Then phenom Desmond Jennings was called up, and ultimately took over the job in left field. 20110918-042924.jpg
Jennings’ call-up was a big boost for the team, but Fuld was almost totally forgotten at that point. Here we are in a tight race in mid-September, and Fuld is out with a hurt wrist and hasn’t played a game since late-August. Desmond Jennings is now the everyday-starter in left field, and Sam Fuld’s legend has virtually disappeared. Fuld still has a bright future ahead of him, and I truly believe that he will eventually restore the legend. Although his bat wasn’t so great in ’11, his glove and speed was still impressive. It wasn’t a bad rookie year at all, not many can light up the highlight reel like that guy. Hopefully he’ll be a Ray for a long time, and we’ll always have a fearless outfielder to count on. Wether he’s crashing in to walls, warming up on the mound, or wearing a cape; Sam Fuld was meant to be a Ray.

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Patience Pays for the Rays

The Rays home grown stars. Some names include Evan Longoria, Carl Crawford, Jeremy Hellickson, James Shields, and many more.

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What’s the Rays secret for their success with bringing up prospects that are quality MLB players? Many ask this question. The answer is patience. Nobody is rushed through the Rays farm system, every player is 100% percent ready to take their first steps in the big leagues. This is another example of the Rays organization’s ability to always look ahead. The Rays know the possible consequences of calling up a minor league player to early. Keeping a top prospect in the minors for a while will make him develop and prepare better for a big league career. To me it’s just common sense; would you rather have a player develop in the minors or during a pennant race in a MLB season. Jeremy Hellickson and Desmond Jennings are great examples of how being patient payed off for the Rays. When asked about the subject Hellickson said, ” It definitely helps, the longer you’re down there, the more opportunities you’re going to have to develop and work on stuff.” Jennings is also is thankful that the Rays took their time to call him up. Last year at the end of the season they called him up just for a few games. It was obvious he needed a little more time to develop. The Rays were very aware of that, and almost a year later Jennings is playing like an All-Star.

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The next Ray prospect to probably be called up, is fireball southpaw Matt Moore. Expect to see him work on his stuff in the minors for a while. Patience is just another example of “Doing it the Rays’ Way”.

 

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