Will Tampa Bay be wild card contenders in '08?
Before you say I'm out of my mind, let me just say that I'm not even a Rays fan. This team could turn out to be next year's Rockies. They have a mix of young an old. Here's their defensive alignment, with opening day age, then combined Minors and Majors '07 BA, HR, RBI, SB, and FA)
C-Dioner Navarro (AGE 24, .227, 9, 44, 3, .984)
1B-Carlos Pena (AGE 29, .282, 46, 121, 1, .993)
2B-Ben Zobrist (AGE 26, .241, 8, 31, 10, N/A)
3B-Akinori Iwamura (AGE 29, .285, 7, 34, 12, .976)
SS-Jason Bartlett (AGE 28, .265, 5, 43, 23, .967)
LF-Carl Crawford (AGE 26, .315, 11, 80, 50, .986)
CF-B.J. Upton (AGE 23, .299, 26, 86, 22, N/A)
RF-Rocco Baldelli (AGE 26, .193, 6, 13, 4, N/A)
DH-Cliff Floyd (AGE 35, .284, 9, 45, 0, 1.000)
Only Floyd is above 30, and all younger players on the team have promising offensive stats and decent speed. Wilson, Dohmann, Kazmir, Salas, Shields, Glover, and Reyes all had good years, and new additions Garza and Percival should prove useful. What do you think?
- brettj666Lv 71 decade agoFavorite Answer
The offense is pretty good, although getting rid of Young will hurt.
It's always been the pitching that's been the issue.
Kamir is great, Shields started well and got tired. Reyes was a walk-on and took over the closer role and did well.
Garza, better be good if they traded Young for him.
The rest of the guys are filler, Percival is old, surprised he came back, but good for him, Salas was suspended for the drug program and is wild and the other guys are simply names.
If Tampa could develop some of those guys in the pitching categories before the hitter leave, they have a chance.
However, as a Blue Jay follower, I will tell you it's awfully tough being in the AL east and the Jays spend money on their team.
I think the odds are that the wild card team comes out of the central this year.
- 1 decade ago
I don't see this team contending with their pitching staff as it is currently constituted. With all of the good young outfielder prospects they have, I think they traded the wrong one. Right after the season there was a rumor about a Carl Crawford to the Giants for either Matt Cain or Tim Lincecum. THAT would have been a good threesome (with Kazmir & Shields). Garza is OK, but just not as good. Another thing, other than Pena & Upton, where are they going to get their power from? They have too many players who can hit 15 Home runs and steal 20 bases. Other than Crawford and Pena, there's nobody who can carry this club offensively. Probably a 4th place finish with around 75 wins is the best Rays fans can hope for.
- 1 decade ago
Not happening. The team is very unproven and the rotation is nothing outside of Kazmir, Shields and Garza. There is no reason to think that they will even challenge the Yankees or Red Sox with their powerhouse $200 million ballclubs. If I was a Rays fan, one of the 40 Rays fans on the planet, I would be shooting for a 75-win season as a semi-realistic goal. Now if they were in the National League or even in a weaker division in the AL, they would have a fair chance at an 80-win season, but just look at their bullpen. It's the worst in baseball. It also does not help that they have to face the Red Sox and the Yankees a combined 38 times a season.
- Brian BLv 61 decade ago
The Devil Rays are getting better, but it seems like they always get beat up by their divison.
Last year, they did better against the Yankees, but they still struggle against the Red Sox. To get into the playoffs, you have to find a way to beat the Red Sox. Matt Garza could help because he beat the Red Sox a few times while he was with the Twins. The Rockies came into Fenway Park and swept the Red Sox last year. They deserved to win the wild card. The Padres got swept by Boston in Petco Park.
Troy Percival did good while he was with the Cardinals, but he's going from probably baseball's worst divison and now heading to the most powerful divison with Boston and New York. Otherwise, none of the Rays relievers are intimidating enough to hold teams in the later innings.
Also, sooner or later, teams will find a scouting report on Carlos Pena. Don't count on him having the year he had in 2007.
Don't count on the Devil Rays becoming a wild card contender until 2009 at the earliest. At least until their number one pick David Price jumps to the majors. He should be really good.Source(s): Bonne chance
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- Anonymous1 decade ago
They will probably start Longoria at 3rd and move Iwamura to second. They also have Johnny Gomes to play right field/DH when Baldelli gets injured.
They will be contenders but they won't win it. They will probably finish 3rd in the AL East with around a .500 record. However, this is a big improvement from past years.
- Anonymous3 years ago
i in my view like Tampa Bay. i think of they seem to be a set with a great style of ability yet not yet. With the yank and the pink Sox of their branch and additionally the needed branch being what it somewhat is there is merely no way they are getting the wild card in '08.
- 1 decade ago
i dont see tampa bay having a shot at the wild card, their in just to strong of a division they have 19 games aginst the yankees and red sox and the blue jays all hard teams. I do think however they might have a chance at finnaly becoming a .500 team for the first time.
- hulidoshiLv 51 decade ago
as much as I hope someone in the AL east can reasonably challenge the Yankees and Red Sox, I don't see that happening. Plus, when you include other strong team in the AL like the Tigers, Angels and Indians, in a best case scenario the Rays are 6th-best in the league....or, just about right in the middle
- FrizzerLv 71 decade ago
The Rays are three or four players away from being a contender, and while they should have a better season in 2008 than they had in 2007, I don't believe we will see the in the playoffs this coming season.
- Anonymous1 decade ago
Yes, Tampa Bay shall contend! And the Orioles shall fall!