After the first full week of spring training I’m cautiously optimistic about the Tampa Bay Rays. As in most spring training games, this is a time that minor league players get their time to shine and shine they have. I feel like the Rays are showcasing more minor league players during this season than in the past, which makes their record of 6-3 that much better.
Joe McCarthy is looking good. This is his 3rd year playing ball in the minors and his 2nd spring training. McCarthy’s had 8 at bats so far and managed to get 4 runs, 3 hits with a home run and 3 RBIs. Chances are that we won’t see him at the Trop this season but he is worth keeping your eye on.
The catcher position is as up in the air as it’s ever been, but this may be Jesus Sucre’s year to get the call. He had been in the minors since 2006 and has had a few brief appearances in the majors, but if he keeps playing the way he is, he could get his shot at a starting position. Sucre has had 8 at bats with 2 runs, 4 hits, 2 home runs, and 4 RBIs. Even without the experience as a major league starter, he clearly has experience and could be what the Rays have been looking for.
There are two young pitchers pitching out the bullpen that have been quietly doing well; Jamie Schultz and Hunter Wood. Schultz has pitched 4 innings and Wood 3, both currently have an ERA of of 0.00. Both are starters in the minors, but could have a solid place in the Rays bullpen later in the season if needed.
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