Chris from Watching Durham Bulls Baseball brought to our attention a glaring weakness in the Rays organizational depth. Not only is there only one active lefty in the Rays bullpen. There are very few lefty options in the minor leagues right now…
RAYS – Randy Choate, (JP Howell on DL)
AAA – (RJ Swindle on DL)
AA – Darin Downs
And that’s it. Two healthy lefty relievers in the majors or upper-level minor leagues.
At some point, the Rays may have to turn to one of their lefty starting pitchers such as Heath Phillips or Carlos Hernandez. Phillips career minor league splits don’t suggest that he is any tougher on lefties while Hernandez does have favorable splits against lefties. Also, both Jake McGee and Alex Torres in AA could be lefty options in the future. But neither figures to be available to the Rays anytime soon.
You can be certain that when Andrew Friedman talks to other GMs, he is asking about lefty relievers. But finding one of those this time of the year will not be easy.
Then again, there is always Brian Shouse.