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Thread: Rays offseason moves

  1. #1
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    Rays offseason moves

    This thread will be for all Rays fans and visitors to post updates and comments on any signings done to improve this team. Two signings this week were the re-signing of SP Jae Seo to a deal for $900K, and a late re-signing last night of DH-1B Greg Norton. Seo was 1-8 for the Rays after being traded here from LA but was a bit of a hard luck pitcher in terms of run support. He gave the Rays a chance to win in most games, and like a lot of our SPs, the bullpen would give it away. If the bullpen gets some upgrades, half those L's could turn into W's. Norton was a steady vet who put up decent numbers as his playing time increased. He even ended up being the AL Player of the Week for the last week of the regular season. He is a good utility guy who has some nice pop in his bat and a steady veteran presence in a clubhouse of a lot of young guys.

    Not earthshattering signings but the kind the Rays have to make and can afford. Next we need to re-sign Wigginton before he hits the open market.
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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by raysnbran
    This thread will be for all Rays fans and visitors to post updates and comments on any signings done to improve this team. Two signings this week were the re-signing of SP Jae Seo to a deal for $900K, and a late re-signing last night of DH-1B Greg Norton. Seo was 1-8 for the Rays after being traded here from LA but was a bit of a hard luck pitcher in terms of run support. He gave the Rays a chance to win in most games, and like a lot of our SPs, the bullpen would give it away. If the bullpen gets some upgrades, half those L's could turn into W's. Norton was a steady vet who put up decent numbers as his playing time increased. He even ended up being the AL Player of the Week for the last week of the regular season. He is a good utility guy who has some nice pop in his bat and a steady veteran presence in a clubhouse of a lot of young guys.

    Not earthshattering signings but the kind the Rays have to make and can afford. Next we need to re-sign Wigginton before he hits the open market.
    At 1.2 million Seo is worth taking a shot on. He has good stuff but seems
    to lack confidence. He is another guy with potential, but at 29 years old,
    his time running out.
    I like Greg Norton alot. He is a top notch utility guy for sure. I also see him
    as a possible starter at 1b next year if no one better can be found.
    Wiggington had a great year. I'm sure other teams noticed so the Rays may need to pony up a few bucks to resign him.
    Last edited by Eddiey; 10-15-2006 at 06:04 PM.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eddiey
    At 1.2 million Seo is worth taking a shot on. He has good stuff but seems
    to lack confidence. He is another guy with potential, but at 29 years old,
    his time running out.
    I like Greg Norton alot. He is a top notch utility guy for sure. I also see him
    as a possible starter at 1b next year if no one better can be found.
    Wiggington had a great year. I'm sure other teams noticed so the Rays may need to pony up a few bucks to resign him.

    Wigginton is gone.. D'Rays will never spend the money..Besides we have all those hot prospects..


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    Jeff Ridgway

    Looks like he impressed people with his work in Havana for USA Baseball at the COPABE Olympic Qualifier.

    Four appearances, 2.2 innings, 0-0 0.00, allowing three hits and twow alks but fanning five.

    Glad to see he's on the 40 man...kid deserves it.
    Man, do I *HATE* the Yankees!!!!!!

  5. #5
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    Ridgway

    And Kevin Witt gets waived. He was the IL MVP but a bust again when called back up to the majors. If he clears waivers, hopefully he re-signs again with Durham. He was a popular player down there and they would love to see him back. Don't know much about Ridgway, but pitching is the only way this team will improve enough to compete with the teams in our division...
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by raysnbran
    And Kevin Witt gets waived. He was the IL MVP but a bust again when called back up to the majors. If he clears waivers, hopefully he re-signs again with Durham. He was a popular player down there and they would love to see him back. Don't know much about Ridgway, but pitching is the only way this team will improve enough to compete with the teams in our division...
    That I can't understand. What did they judge him on??? The .145 September performance??? SOMEBODY will pick him up.

    Granted, I'm a Red Sox fan, but I do go down to the Naimoli complex to watch the action in the spring. I've met Ridgway..good level-headed kid. He's paid his dues in the minors.
    Man, do I *HATE* the Yankees!!!!!!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by SDL
    That I can't understand. What did they judge him on??? The .145 September performance??? SOMEBODY will pick him up.

    Granted, I'm a Red Sox fan, but I do go down to the Naimoli complex to watch the action in the spring. I've met Ridgway..good level-headed kid. He's paid his dues in the minors.
    What sealed Witts fate could have been his on base percentage. His batting
    average was .148 and his obp was the same .148. Zero walks and 21 strikeouts
    in 61 at bats is something worse then just a poor performance. His other shot at the majors was in 2003 with the Tigers. He had 270 at bats and hit .263 with an obp of .301. The fact that he is 30 years old and probably has no more upside in him didn't help.

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    Witt

    Exactly Eddie. Some guys are just AAA players and can't get any higher. Nothing wrong with that, they can make a decent living doing something they love. But they've reached their level.
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  9. #9
    I was happy to see Norton re-sign. He had said he wanted to come back. Seo was another good signing. I thought the Rays signed Wigginton to a two year deal last year. I might be wrong.
    Lets get Eddie Basinski elected to the Polish Sports Hall of Fame.
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    Brian Meadows

    The Rays declined to pick up the 2007 option on Brian Meadows yesterday. He stepped in as the closer for a while after Tyler Walker went down, and saved 7 in a row, but then had a really bad stretch over 3 games, and never got the closer job back again. He was due $1.07M, and has said he would be willing to come back again for less money, so he might still be a part of the mix.
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  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by raysnbran
    The Rays declined to pick up the 2007 option on Brian Meadows yesterday. He stepped in as the closer for a while after Tyler Walker went down, and saved 7 in a row, but then had a really bad stretch over 3 games, and never got the closer job back again. He was due $1.07M, and has said he would be willing to come back again for less money, so he might still be a part of the mix.
    The closer issue remins one of the biggest question marks for the Rays. It was clearly shown last year that they really need one. Anyone know the status of Tyler Walker?
    Lets get Eddie Basinski elected to the Polish Sports Hall of Fame.
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  12. #12
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    Walker

    Didn't he get an operation for Tommy John surgery in June? He might be out all of 2007. McClung might get another shot, but don't forget about Shinji Mori. I think he might be ready for ST. A closer is important, but not as important for us as for, say the Red Sox. We can get our 65 wins without overpaying for a closer. With Papelbon moving to the rotation, unless they are counting on Foulke or Timlin, they don't have one, do they? Unless maybe they make Hansen a closer and hope lightning strikes twice for them with young fireballing closers.
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  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by raysnbran
    Didn't he get an operation for Tommy John surgery in June? He might be out all of 2007. McClung might get another shot, but don't forget about Shinji Mori. I think he might be ready for ST. A closer is important, but not as important for us as for, say the Red Sox. We can get our 65 wins without overpaying for a closer. With Papelbon moving to the rotation, unless they are counting on Foulke or Timlin, they don't have one, do they? Unless maybe they make Hansen a closer and hope lightning strikes twice for them with young fireballing closers.
    I'm not saying spend a lot of money on a closer. But I can remember at least 10 times a decent closer would have allowed the Rays to win a few more games. Even bringing in someone like former Ray Roberto Hernandez would be an improvment. Mori is coming back from Tommy John surgery, there is nothing for certain with him.
    Lets get Eddie Basinski elected to the Polish Sports Hall of Fame.
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  14. #14
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    Tyler Walker

    http://tampabay.devilrays.mlb.com/NA...ns.jsp?c_id=tb

    Rays release former closer Tyler Walker on Friday. No great loss, as he had TJ surgery and was probably out for 2007 anyways. And tonypug, today's SP Times had quotes from Mori saying he would be ready for ST. He had a torn labrum, not TJ surgery.
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  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by raysnbran
    http://tampabay.devilrays.mlb.com/NA...ns.jsp?c_id=tb

    Rays release former closer Tyler Walker on Friday. No great loss, as he had TJ surgery and was probably out for 2007 anyways. And tonypug, today's SP Times had quotes from Mori saying he would be ready for ST. He had a torn labrum, not TJ surgery.
    Thanksfor the update. In my mind Mori is still a question mark, until he proves he can get batters out in the major leagues.
    Lets get Eddie Basinski elected to the Polish Sports Hall of Fame.
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    Hey, here's a thought, trade Gomes to the Phils for Pat Burrell...I want my favorite player on my favorite team. Ok ok, the phils can throw in Liberthal too...hahaha

  17. #17
    Got some Rays questions:

    - Do either Brignac or Longoria have a chance to win a job in ST?
    - How many players have been tried out/considered at different positions? Baldelli (CF/1B), Guzman (SS/OF/3B/1B), Bankston (1B/3B/1B), Dukes (OF/1B), Pedroza (OF/C)...?
    - Which pitchers most likely will have a rotation spot? Kazmir is guaranteed, but beyond that...Shields, Hammel, Niemann, Howell...?
    - Who are the likeliest closer candidates? McClung, Jackson, Salas, Mori...?
    - What ever happened to the Argentinian kid who threw underhand knuckleballs?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Go Gomes
    Hey, here's a thought, trade Gomes to the Phils for Pat Burrell...I want my favorite player on my favorite team. Ok ok, the phils can throw in Liberthal too...hahaha
    Let me guess...

    You were also a Wayne Gomes fan as well...
    Man, do I *HATE* the Yankees!!!!!!

  19. #19
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    No way, I hated that guy. Just Jonny.

  20. #20
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    I would try Edwin Jackson at closer spot. I've always liked the way he pitches.
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    Pitching coach

    The Rays pitching coach, Mike Butcher, was given permission to speak to the Angels about their pitching coach vacancy (with Bud Black leaving) and has accepted the position. It will be a lateral move, but one closer to his home and family in Chandler Arizona. He has been replaced with recently fired Astros' pitching coach Jim Hickey. Hickey's staffs in recent years had led the NL in ERA, but he was let go, reportedly, for not having developed the young pitchers on their staff. Sentimental favorite from the Rays system, Xavier Hernandez, was apparently not considered, but he might be moved up in the minor league system to be Durham's pitching coach.
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  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by raysnbran
    The Rays pitching coach, Mike Butcher, was given permission to speak to the Angels about their pitching coach vacancy (with Bud Black leaving) and has accepted the position. It will be a lateral move, but one closer to his home and family in Chandler Arizona. He has been replaced with recently fired Astros' pitching coach Jim Hickey. Hickey's staffs in recent years had led the NL in ERA, but he was let go, reportedly, for not having developed the young pitchers on their staff. Sentimental favorite from the Rays system, Xavier Hernandez, was apparently not considered, but he might be moved up in the minor league system to be Durham's pitching coach.
    Pitching coaches seem to get re-cycled more then manager these days. Butcher was also criticized for not developing young pitchers enough. The bottom line is the pitching coach is only as good as the talent he has to work with. Look at former Rays pitching coach, Chuck Hernandez. He went to Detroit last season, and now he is called a pitching Guru, but look at the talent he had to work with.
    Lets get Eddie Basinski elected to the Polish Sports Hall of Fame.
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    Moves

    Rays dropped former SP Doug Waechter from the 40 man roster, and added P Mitch Talbot, OF Elijah Dukes and IF Elliot Johnson. Waechter sustained a torn labrum and wouldn't be able to pitch anyways until next summer, plus he had a disasterous 2005 both in TB and in Durham. The Rays might offer him a minor league deal, and considering he's a hometown guy and should not expect to get any other offers, he will probably re-sign and eventually play with Durham.

    Talbot was aquired last July in the Huff deal to the Astros and performed very well down the stretch for Montgomery in the playoffs. Johnson also had an excellent year and is considered a solid prospect. Dukes' talent and troubles have been well chronicled, and his name has been linked to a deal with Florida for Ricky Nolasco, so maybe that's why he's been added to the 40man.
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  24. #24
    I like Elliot Johnson a lot. I wonder with TB's multiple infield options if he'll get a chance at the bigs when he's ready in a year or two. Cantu would have to be traded, and now Iwamura is an option there, too. Also, what's the deal with his brother Leon? The Rays keep drafting him and he keeps refusing to play.

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    Cantu

    You have to wonder if 2005 was a flash in the pan for Cantu. His defense is a liability and it is hard to find a position he might be good at. He got hurt early in the season in 2006 and never got hot the whole season. He has a lot to prove that he can play at this level.
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