Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Former Ray Brignac finds room in Colorado

DENVER — Reid Brignac is enjoying the scenery in Colorado.

Sure, the mountains are nice. But for Brignac it's more a matter of being somewhere else in the majors besides Tampa Bay, given that the Rays clearly no longer had him in their plans by trading for shortstop Yunel Escobar, keeping infielder Ryan Roberts and signing infielder/outfielder Kelly Johnson.

"It's been a great change of scenery," Brignac said in the Rockies clubhouse before Friday's game against his former teammates.

"I feel like everything happens for a reason, and for me it definitely was a positive thing. Definitely. Yeah, it was tough to leave. That was home. That was comfort. And now to go somewhere uncomfortable at first, but to get adjusted so quickly, I almost feel like I didn't skip a beat with these guys. We started to play games and instantly start to build team chemistry, it's been great. It's been a great chance for me."

Brignac hasn't gotten a lot of opportunity, starting seven games (and only one at shortstop, even though starter Troy Tulowitzki has missed some games), with the Rockies, but Brignac said he has enjoyed being part of what he called "a great organization." In 20 games overall, he was hitting .250 (9-for-36) with no homers and three RBIs. He pinch-hit Friday with two outs in the 10th and singled to right.

Having been in the Rays organization since being a second-round pick in 2004 and having spent parts of five seasons in the majors, he knew his time there was coming to an end. He thanked executive vice president Andrew Friedman for trading him, for an undisclosed amount of cash, to the Rockies.

"No doubt, I could see the signs right in front of me," he said. "I'm not an idiot. I've been in this game long enough, I understand the business side of the game that goes along with just playing the game.

"I knew if I was going to be in Rays camp it was going to be very difficult for me to make that team, so I was really hoping Andrew gave me a chance to get with another team before spring training, to get with my new team and play for my new manager."

Having seen James Shields and Elliot Johnson do well against the Rays in Kansas City, Brignac, 27, said he was hoping to get his chance to beat his former teammates.

"I'm next in line," he said, "so, yeah, I have to do something."

Marc Topkin can be reached at [email protected]

 
Comments
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: The Rays fire sale is on

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: The Rays fire sale is on

The fire sale is on for the Rays, as they trade Steven Souza, Jr., to Arizona to trim more payroll for this season.In his lastest podcast, Rick Stroud says he feels bad for Rays fans, as many of their favorite players have left the team, including Ev...
Updated: 26 minutes ago
With Souza the latest to be gone, what do Rays have left? Well …

With Souza the latest to be gone, what do Rays have left? Well …

The first question to ask, understandably, is who do the Rays have left?And, after they Tuesday added 2017 team MVP Steven Souza Jr. to the list of departees that had just included Corey Dickerson and Jake Odorizzi, the next to ask is what do they ha...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Steven Souza trade: Instant reaction to the Rays latest deal

Steven Souza trade: Instant reaction to the Rays latest deal

The Rays traded right fielder Steven Souza, Jr., their 2017 team MVP, to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night in a three-team deal for Arizona's No. 2 prospect, lefty Anthony Banda, Yankees infield prospect Nick Solak and two players to be named...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Rays trade team MVP Steven Souza Jr. in three-team deal that nets prospects

Rays trade team MVP Steven Souza Jr. in three-team deal that nets prospects

PORT CHARLOTTE — Evan Longoria traded in December. Jake Odorizzi and Corey Dickerson dumped over the weekend. Then, in a stunning move Tuesday night, 2017 team MVP Steven Souza Jr. shipped to Arizona as part of a three-team deal that netted onl...
Updated: 10 hours ago

Who are Anthony Banda and Nick Solak

So, who did the Rays get back for RF Steven Souza Jr.?LHP Anthony Banda, 24, who appeared in eight games/four starts for the Diamondbacks last season, and 2B Nick Solak, 23, from the Yankees organization in addition to two players to be named later f...
Published: 02/20/18
Steven Souza Jr. on Rays’ roster moves: ‘This is not a shocker’

Steven Souza Jr. on Rays’ roster moves: ‘This is not a shocker’

PORT CHARLOTTE — RF Steven Souza Jr. returned to camp Tuesday after missing four days while he went home to Seattle to attend to a family matter.When asked if everything was okay, Souza said, "Right now. We'll just leave it at that."S...
Published: 02/20/18
After whirlwind few days, C.J. Cron joins Rays

After whirlwind few days, C.J. Cron joins Rays

PORT CHARLOTTE – C.J. Cron knew he was spending Tuesday night in a Punta Gorda hotel. Beyond that, he knew little of his future with the Rays."I haven't talked to anybody about anything really," Cron said.The right-handed hitting first baseman ...
Published: 02/20/18
Who is new Rays 1B/DH C.J. Cron? 10 things to know

Who is new Rays 1B/DH C.J. Cron? 10 things to know

Acquired Saturday night from the Angels (for a player to be named – a minor-leaguer, and not a top prospect), 1B/DH C.J. Cron is expected to join the Rays today in Port Charlotte.Here are 10 things to know about him:1. Full name: Christopher Jo...
Published: 02/20/18
Rays tread new turf (literally) for second straight year

Rays tread new turf (literally) for second straight year

PORT CHARLOTTE — Tropicana Field is getting new turf — again.Shaw Sports will replace the surface installed last spring in a mutual decision with the Rays that it did not look as good — from the stands or on TV — as expected.T...
Published: 02/20/18
Longtime fan Dick Vitale sounds off on Rays’ latest roster moves

Longtime fan Dick Vitale sounds off on Rays’ latest roster moves

Longtime and extremely popular ESPN college basketball announcer Dick Vitale is arguably the Rays' most prominent fan.The Lakewood Ranch resident has season tickets adjacent to the visitors' dugout at Tropicana Field and is often seen at Rays games.A...
Published: 02/20/18