The Bulls Could Be Very Good (Again)
This past weekend marked the first of Spring Training 2018, and the Rays made a splash on Saturday with a couple of moves.
After much speculation, the team traded RHP Jake Odorizzi to the Twins for a 21-year-old minor league shortstop, and also acquired 1B/DH CJ Cron from the Angels for a player to be named later. Finally, the team designated 2017 All-Star Corey Dickerson for assignment, meaning they have until the end of this week to trade or release him.
Additionally, Rays skipper Kevin Cash confirmed the team will go with a four-man rotation to begin the year.
So what does this all mean for the Bulls?
Barring injury, Durham could start the season with Ryan Yarbrough, Brent Honeywell and Yonny Chirinos in the rotation, who combined to go 37–19 last year. They could be joined by Jose De Leon (who is back to full health) and a number of other options, including 21-year-old Jose Mujica, who won 13 games in Double-A a year ago.
With the addition of CJ Cron, there is speculation he and Brad Miller will split first base duties, meaning Jake Bauers would be back in the Bull City.
Marc Topkin, who covers the Rays very closely for the Tampa Bay Times gave his first projection for Tampa Bay’s Opening Day roster.
Obviously there’s a long way until Opening Day, but if that projection were correct, the Bulls could return the following players from last year’s championship team:
Jake Bauers, Brent Honeywell, Willy Adames, Ryan Yarbrough, Yonny Chirinos, Johnny Field, Kean Wong, Diego Castillo, Chih-Wei Hu, Andrew Kittredge, Adam Kolarek, Jaime Schultz, Jonny Venters and Hunter Wood.
Not to mention the addition of guys like De Leon, Mujica and Christian Arroyo (who was picked up in the Evan Longoria trade).
Yeah — the Bulls could be very good again.