Marc Topkin is reporting that the Rays have signed relief pitcher Lance Cormier to a one-year, $675K contract. To make room on the 40-man roster, the Rays designated Dewon Day for assignment, whom was just claimed off of waivers last week.
We have updated the 40-man roster projection to reflect this signing.
This move means one of two things:
- The Rays expect Troy Percival to start the season on the DL. As of right now, all spots in the bullpen are spoken for and there are no candidates for demotion. The low-man on the proverbial Totem Pole is Jason Hammel and he is out of minor league options. Or…
- The Rays are expecting one of their bullpen arms to be traded prior to opening day. The likely candidates are Chad Bradford, whom the Rays have tried to trade, Jason Hammel, who is out of minor league options or Jeff Niemann, if the Rays start the season with David Price in the rotation. If the Rays can move Bradford (or Dan Wheeler), signing Cormier would save the Rays over $2 million on the 2009 payroll.
Cormier appeared in 45 games (1 start) for the Orioles last season, posting a 4.02 ERA while striking out 46 and walking 34 in 71.2 innings.
He also posted a career-high 56.8% ground balls in 2008 which could go a long ways towards a solid season with the Rays solid infield defense. And for the last three seasons, Cormier, a right-hander, has actually been harder on lefties. In 2008, his OPS against lefties was .667, 95 points better than his mark against righties (.772).