Prior to the season, the Rays made one of their biggest splashes in the free agent market in years. The Rays signed Pat Burrell to a 2-year, $16 million contract. Many thought the Rays had one of the biggest steals of the off-season. After all, in the previous four years, Burrell averaged .262-31-99 with a .385 OBP and a .889 OPS.
This year, Burrell is on pace for .238-4-46, with .349 OBP and .664 OPS. It has been so bad, that Jon Heyman ranked Burrell as the third worst free agent signing of this past off-season.
The optimist will tell you that Burrell has been injured and he is a naturally streaky player. The pessimist will tell you that the Rays are almost at the midway mark of the season. And a commenter recently pointed out that the Pat Burrell wearing the Rays uniform is not the same Pat Burrell that played in Philadephia for the past 9 seasons.
That is not the face of a man the veteran Phillies players dubbed “The Bait”. That is not the face of one of the hottest bachelors in Philadelphia. In fact, Burrell is not even a bachelor any longer. So has Burrell “let himself go” since he got married and got his new contract?
We contacted meech.one of The Fightins for a reaction to Burrell’s new “figure”:
Wow. You would think that being tempted by cheese steaks and soft pretzels for nine years would’ve made Pat fat. Apparently all he needed was a new contract and a wife. He must’ve been growing that horrible goatee to cover up the developing second chin. Say it ain’t so, Pat!
Whatever the reason, the Rays were sold a bill of goods.