Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tampa Bay Rays facing several more roster decisions in coming weeks

ST. PETERSBURG — So, now that the Rays got that one out of the way …

Calling up Hank Blalock and shipping out Pat Burrell was just the first of several decisions the Rays will make in the coming weeks.

• Bullpen: Assuming J.P. Howell is ready for a late May-early June return — though he still is taking small steps in his left-shoulder rehabilitation; the true test comes in minor-league games — the Rays will have to make room. Most likely to go would be Joaquin Benoit or Andy Sonnanstine, neither of whom has pitched many key innings.

Consider: Benoit likely would be lost on waivers, Sonnanstine has options and can be sent to the minors, Lance Cormier can return to the long-relief role, and the Rays like to conserve assets. Gut feeling: Sonnanstine goes to Triple A to get regular relief work.

• Catcher: It doesn't work roster-wise for the Rays to carry three, so when Kelly Shoppach (right knee surgery) comes off the disabled list in June, either John Jaso or Dioner Navarro has to go.

As much as the Rays are thrilled to ride the wave of Jaso's hot start, there's a good sense he'll cool off. So sending him back to the minors won't seem like as big a deal in a few weeks as it would now. They could send down Navarro instead (though the blow to his confidence might render him useless the rest of the season) or trade him (though the return would hardly be worth it). Again, think asset conservation. Gut feeling: Jaso goes back to Triple A until needed again, or September.

• DH/bench: If/when Matt Joyce (elbow strain) gets healthy/is ready to play (and in the majors), he could be the next option if Blalock isn't much help. Or Joyce, a good defensive outfielder, could be brought up anyway, taking the place of Sean Rodriguez, who has had a limited role, or Reid Brignac, if he cools off. Doing so would limit the Rays' flexibility and put Ben Zobrist at second more often. Gut feeling: Rodriguez initially goes down.

Also worth pondering: How long to stick with Zobrist at No. 3 and Carlos Peña No. 5 in the batting order, whether to move Jason Bartlett out of the leadoff slot, and what to do with sizzling prospect RHP Jeremy Hellickson.

Tampa Bay Rays facing several more roster decisions in coming weeks 05/15/10 [Last modified: Saturday, May 15, 2010 10:44pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Calm (Largo) and clamorous (St. Petersburg) converge Friday night

    Footballpreps

    If Largo and St. Petersburg high schools are going to be successful this football season, it will be because of defense. And if those defenses are going to be successful, it will be because of secondaries that are potentially the best in Pinellas County.

    St. Petersburg High School CB Anthony Johnson  practices with his team Monday, Aug. 21, 2017.
  2. Rays morning after: Secret to Alex Colome's success is staying cool, calm, collected

    Blogs

    The ninth inning couldn't have started much worse for Rays closer Alex Colome on Tuesday, who took over with a 6-4 lead and quickly allowed a single and a double to bring the tying run to the plate.

  3. How will former USF assistant Tom Allen fare at Indiana?

    Blogs

    Big Ten Network analyst Gerry DiNardo doesn't sound particularly optimistic about Tom Allen's chances of keeping Indiana competitive in his first year as the Hoosiers' head coach.

    "He has some challenges," DiNardo said.

  4. ESPN cites safety in removing Robert Lee from UVA broadcast due to name (w/video)

    College

    ESPN has removed an announcer from its broadcast of the University of Virginia's first football game next month because he has the same name as a Confederate general memorialized in statues that are being taken down across the country.

    Louisville lines up for a play against Virginia during an NCAA college football game in Charlottesville, Va., in 2016 ESPN broadcaster Robert Lee will not work Virginia's season opener because of recent violence in Charlottesville sparked by the decision to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee. A spokeswoman for ESPN says Lee has been moved to Youngstown State's game at Pittsburgh on the ACC Network on Sept. 2. The network says the decision was made "as the tragic events in Charlottesville were unfolding, simply because of the coincidence of his name." [Associated Press]
  5. Celtics were only team in position to deal for Kyrie Irving

    Nba

    The Cavaliers found themselves in a seemingly impossible situation when it came to trading Kyrie Irving. Not only did Cleveland need to try to extract the kind of price a team looks to get to trade its star — some combination of cap relief, young players and draft picks — it also needed to acquire talent to …

    Kyrie Irving, left, is guarded by Stephen Curry during the NBA Finals last season. [Associated Press]