Ben Zobrist and Yunel Escobar have been traded to the Oakland A’s for catcher John Jaso, two prospects and cash (believed to be ~$1.5 million).

And there it is. Zorilla is now an ex-Ray and the destruction of the 2014 Tampa Bay Rays continues. Except, instead of a sledgehammer, the Rays are using a Death Star pointed at the Trop.

Jaso was originally drafted by the Rays and played with the team for three seasons before being traded to the Seattle Mariners for Josh Lueke. Jaso will share catching duties with Rene Rivera.

In addition, the Rays received 20-year-old shortstop Daniel Robertson, rated as the A’s top prospect by Baseball America. Robertson was the A’s’ first-round pick in the 2012 draft and hit .310 with a .402 OBP and 15 home runs in the high-A California League.

The other prospect is 22-year-old center fielder Boog Powell (no relation, his dad was a big fan), the No. 11 prospect in the A’s organization. Powell was a 20th-round pick in 2012 and hit .343 with 3 home runs and 16 steals in 2014, mostly in the low-A Midwest League.

As for the 2015 Rays, barring any further moves, it would now appear that Asdrubal Cabrera will play shortstop with Nick Franklin and Logan Forsythe sharing time at second base.



  1. William Woodworth says:

    Matt Silverman included his father in the deal and is reportedly shopping his wife to the Arizona Diamondbacks.

  2. Mr Ed says:

    A least we are restocking the minors for another run at a minor league championship,
    one good thing about the word rebuilding. You can't use it if you had nothing to rebuild.
    Remember all those 100 loss season.

  3. Dave L says:

    This is his last arb year, Jaso is a free agent after 2015...

    Definitely sacrificing today not for tomorrow but for 2018.

    Hard to judge.

    #1 Prospect is a nice feature and although wrecking high A is encouraging, there are no guarantees that is a direct line to MLB success.

  4. Mr. Smith 1980 says:

    Thus ends the Zobrist era.
    'Way back' in 2009, while I was running my own little Rays' blog, Ben Zobrist came through in the clutch against the A's and I penned this "Ode To Zobrist" (ironic that it was the A's):

    "An Ode To Zobrist"

    The crowd they are gathered,
    The team is all warm.
    Outside of the Trop
    there arises a storm.

    As the rain beats,
    leading the way to thunder.
    The Rays take the field,
    attempting the A's to put under.

    The man on the mound
    works quick and throws hard.
    Leading his his team
    like Captain Picard

    The innings they come,
    and the innings they go.
    The Rays leading by 1,
    and facing a worthy foe.

    Into the 8th
    that tricky bridge inning.
    Oakland scores 1,
    we're back to the beginning.

    Tied headed for the 9th,
    and here comes the closer.
    But Percy, oh Percy
    is such a push-over.

    He blows like the wind,
    outside of the Trop.
    Giving Oakland the lead
    now they're 2 runs on top.

    Bottom of the 9th
    most all hope is lost.
    But the gang keeps fighting,
    no matter the cost.

    Aybar gets on,
    but Aki gets out.
    Only 2 outs left,
    another loss, no doubt.

    But what is this ,
    from the dugout I see?
    A tall slender player
    who's name starts with Z!

    So many times ,
    he's come through in the clutch.
    Can he possibly do it again,
    enough has to be enough.

    But now with the count
    at 1 and 1 sitting
    Zobrist has visions
    of nothing but winning.

    The pitcher delivers the ball,
    hoping Zobrist to beat
    But Ben, he is ready...
    and sends it into the seats!

    Hooray, hoorah,
    he's done it again!
    This super-utility player,
    whom most just call Ben.

    You can call him Clutch,
    you can even call him the Thrilla'
    But me and my friends,
    we'll just call him ZORILLA.

    Rays The Stakes
    May 22, 2009
    James Smith


  5. Mr. Smith 1980 says:

    That's a pretty decent return considering they (the A's) are essentially doing the Rays the favor of taking Esco and his salary off their hands. A young, top-level SS prospect is of great value. Jaso is a nice player and he serves a very specific need on the Rays 2015 roster, but the fact that his contract isn't team friendly is surprising.
    I can only wonder where Powell will fit-in against the Rays' current prospects.

  6. edward williams says:

    by any chance did we get the green uniforms back too, guess it's time to dust off the old purple devil rays hat. OHHHH NOOOOOO,

  7. Jim says:

    We traded Zobrist for a #1 & #15.. Escobar for Jaso, Another great trade by AS. If Friedman/Joe were still here, we be running out the same roster that took us to 4th last year. Hoping that something would "click" and blaming luck when it didn't.

    Silverman got 1 impressive prospect and another possible prospect and a MLB starting catcher. He's filling a hole in the roster and stocking up on two impressive looking kids. It's refreshing to actually saying AS making moves, once AGAIN TRYING TO IMPROVE A FOURTH PLACE TEAM. Some of you guys are acting like this some sort of post WS Winning fire sale.

    Props to AS for making aggressive moves, and thanks for everything ZO. Go Rays!

    • originaltom says:

      It is not unprecedented for a team with fewer than 77 wins in one year to win the ws the next season. For example, the 2013 SF Giants won 76 games and won the ws in 2014. Also, the 2012 red sox won 69 games and than won the ws in 2013


  8. Carey says:

    Really.... Jaso for Zobrist. Can you say 100 losses and only 6000 people at the Trop.

  9. FortMyersDave says:

    Robertson looks to be a player to watch in the future. I am guessing that he will be playing this summer in Port Charlotte or Montgomery. The trolls who hate the rays are having a field day though; they think the trade of Zobrist signals a return to the Devil Rays days but lets face it; Zorilla is a great player but he is hitting a time in his career where his numbers will probably start to dip and the rays are trying to build a team with an eye on the future; not the win now attitude that backfired last year. Right now if the Rays can simply plate a few runs each game their pitching staff should make them competitive and thus probably in the AL East mix though the decision to retain Derek Shelton is baffling as no team in baseball with the exception of the Padres has been no hit, one hit, shut out or held to one run more than the Rays under his watch as hitting coach but that also is on the guys who were on the roster last season and 14 of them from last opening day are now gone.

    • Matt says:

      Agree with you Dave, the trolls have been ridiculous. I've also cringed at the amount of ignorant and uneducated Rays fans that have bashed the organization for their moves. They only care about the big names (Hellickson, Joyce, Zobrist), and don't really understand the Rays for what they are, which is a team that moves big players before its too late. I fully expect them to be competitive this year, because so many games last year were lost because our 2014 roster failed to get a hit in a big spot.

  10. Carey says:

    I love the Rays, this will be a competitive year.... To see who wants last place in the AL East. I have been a Rays fans since the beginning, this will be a hard year to watch. But they might be a good .500 team in a few years.

  11. Carey says:

    Wait I get it now...... Number 1 draft pick in 2016.

  12. Dave says:

    Silverman= chuck Lamar

    What a moron

    Last place, back to 1998-2007

    Bring back Namoili

    • JIM says:

      We got #1 & #15 for Zobrist? What on earth do you think his value is? Jaso for Escobar was a wash. It helped both teams. Can you image if we would have traded #1 and #15 FOR someone like Zo??? Two top prospects for a one year utility rental.

      If this was a fire sale and mgt were mailing it in, then they as ZERO chance we would we would have signed Cabrera for $$$$. We will have a better record than the lump of crap that AF/JM put out last year.

    • FortMyersDave says:

      No way Dave. Silverman is not Chuck Lamar by any means. The Rays are not going back to the Naolmoli days no matter what all the trolls think simply because the pitching staff is going to make most games winnable if the Rays can score 3 or 4 runs on most nights. Last year scoring runs and Ballfour/Peralta were the weak links. Bullpen should be improved this year and the bats, well can they get worse? Not really and everyone is whining about Zorilla leaving, but he was part of the problem last year along with the rest of the lineup, there were long stretches where he stranded runners in scoring positions finishing 0.198 for the year and only netting 45 rbis. By the numbers the rays fleeced the A's on this one simply by getting them to take error prone Escobar in the deal and his salary... I will miss Zobrist but the Rays will still compete no matter what RedSux/Yankme/anti-Tampa trolls think; especially the ones who love to post anything negative about Tampa!.

      • FortMyersDave says:

        ^finishing 0.198 for the year with RISP...... Zorilla was a good guy but his stick was not there when the Rays needed it in many of those 2-1 type of losses....

        • CC says:

          He was also a big part of the problem getting off to such a bad first half. Zo was hitting .085 in early August.WE essentially traded Zo for Cabrera a #1 and a #11.Hate to see him go but the numbers don't lie.

  13. Josh Stanley says:

    I like the trade....Zobrist was good, but he was still just a .270 hitter. He could play nearly every position, which was nice but he was never worth more to another team than right now. This is the life of a small market team.

    Always look to sell high and buy low. Hopefully we win on more of these than we lose.

  14. edward williams says:

    ok so i guess im one of the trolls who can't have an opinion lol, really guys chill on my end i was kidding about the purple rays hat, maybe. I would like to bring up though the fact that all the saber guys where talking about how good zo was with his saber numbers, and the fact that he was one of the best players in mlb with those numbers, now i have always been the first to admit i don't know anything about sabermetrics, nor do i really want to know a whole bunch, but i am just going by what i read, according to the internet sites, i know i know, oakland has been trading away thier minor league talent, sooooo that moves up the talent in the minors, sooooooo if i am correct that means if the guy in front of you was say the number 10 best player in your minors and than gets traded , you move up, sooooo where were these guys before , i don't believe number 1 and 15. I am not against trading zo or escobar, it is that we got a player back that the rays didn't want (they traded him before) and two single a ballplayers, who may or may not be going to aa ball, one who got a 50 game suspension, should fit right in . I am in favor of what matt silverman has done so far, just don't understand the payback, how many more years are we going to keep using the same excuses, this is rays way, ok win 90 games , not this year, play meaningful games in sept, maybe, still have a good pitching staff, win a world series , or just go back, not happening soon, sooooooo i guess this is what we are stuck with , the same old stuff, just different names, and here i thought it was going to be a boring off season. Oh maybe you all can help me here, i was just thinking to myself, who is going to hit 20 -25 home runs for us besides longo, does anybody on this team scare any pitcher. I hope with the 12.5 million they saved , i forgot they got cash back too , about 1.5 million , they can at least go out and get a decent bat, ohhhhh that is jaso, lol oh and before anybody says it, yes i go to games etc, etc. Thanks everybody this has really been an interesting discussion, and i do mean that, not sarcastically. Hava a great day, and GO RAYS.

    • OriginalTom says:

      "Oh maybe you all can help me here, i was thinking to myself, who is going to hit 20-25 home runs besides Longo, does anybody on this team scare a pitcher"

      ED, maybe no one else hits 20-25 home runs. You can still be a good team without having multiple players hit 20-25 home runs. For example, the Giant won the World Series and there team leader in HR and RBI had 22 and 89. The Royal did not have anyone hit 20 home runs and the team leader in RBI had only 74.

      Look, I was not in favor of trading Zobrist but it happened and Silverman seems to have gotten a decent return (although only time will tell).The minor leagues are now pretty welly stocked with middle infielder with Adames, Robertson, the Guy they got for Myers, Hager, Brett, Beckham and Lee. They also have solid Pitching so I do not see the Devil Rays day returning in the near future.

    • Jim says:

      "a player we traded before." Yeah we traded him for a rapist because AF was the easily the worst in the league as "scout" at catcher. A revolving door of incompetence at the position.. AS has actually made a realistic effort to overhaul the position and improve the Rays and did so while not braking the bank.

      Both catchers acquired are light years ahead of what we had last year. It's been a glaring hole in our lineup. Another great trade.

    • Mr. Smith 1980 says:

      Take a peak at Cabrera's numbers. He has 20-25 HR power...

  15. OriginalTom says:

    Oops, "the guy they got for Myers" I actually meant Andrew Velasquez and they got him for Hellickson.

  16. Dave L says:

    Remember Jaso got another bump on the noggin last August and didnt even play after that. Looks like he was brought in mostly to be a LH DH to face RHP more so than catcher. One more incident and his catching days could be over. He has some versatility and some athleticism. I would expect he would be brought in to catch games where we need an offensive booth as a late inning replacement.

    Before this move my thoughts were that the only holes that remained were a 2nd catcher and a backup 1st baseman. Jaso is more of a third catcher and backing up a LH 1st baseman with another LH 1st baseman woud be curious.

    With the loss of Joyce and Zobrist we certainly needed a boost from the left side so I get that. Asdrubal is a SH so that helps some as well

  17. doug says:

    under valued return ...that is all that needs to be said.


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