Spring Training Update: Week Four
As Spring Training 2015 comes to a close, we look back at the final week of Grapefruit League play, updating you on all the roster moves that have taken place since last week’s update. Additionally, the Bulls’ 2015 Opening Day roster has become slightly clearer since our roster speculation a few days ago, as you’ll see below.
On Monday, the Rays reassigned eight players to the minor leagues in pitchers Brandon Gomes, Jhan Marinez, Jim Miller, Jordan Norberto and Everett Teaford; catcher Mayo Acosta and outfielders Corey Brown and Joey Butler. There’s a good chance each of these players begins the season in the Durham, with Teaford starting the year in the Bulls’ rotation.
On Tuesday Tampa Bay made two moves that will affect the Bulls, as they released infielder Alexi Casilla, and then traded southpaw Mike Montgomery to the Mariners for pitcher Erasmo Ramirez, who will open the season with Tampa Bay. Knowing the big club only needs four starting pitchers for the season’s first nine days, this could mean Matt Andriese will open the season in Durham with Ramirez rounding out the Rays’ first four starters (Archer, Odorizzi, Karns, Ramirez). The release of Casilla now means that the backup infield spot will go to Tim Beckham, Jake Elmore or Juan Francisco, with the other two headed to the Bull City (Francisco has an April 5th opt-out clause if not on the Rays roster).
With three Grapefruit League games remaining, Gomes has turned in a superb spring, allowing one earned run in 12.1 innings, while striking out 16 and walking just one. Miller did not allow a run over six innings of work, while Teaford allowed just three earned runs in 13.1 frames. Offensively Brown and Butler each had productive springs, as Brown posted a .375 OBP in 20 games, with Butler hitting a pair of homers and driving in six RBIs.
For a full breakdown of Rays Spring Training statistics, click here.