Surprise! Chris Archer is the opening day starter. He will likely be followed by Drew Smyly, Jake Odorizzi, and Matt Moore.

The big question is whether the Rays will go with a fifth starter to start the season, which presumably would be Erasmo Ramirez. The Rays have enough off days where they could go with just four and either add an extra reliever or an extra bat to the bench for the first couple of weeks.

In a recent appearance on the Rays Baseball podcast, pitching coach Jim Hickey was non-committal, saying the team wasn’t sure what they would do yet, but did concede that there are benefits to using a fifth starter early on and giving the starters an occasional extra day of rest that could come in handy later in the season.


  • Logan Forsythe could be the main leadoff hitter for the Rays this year. []
  • Here is the Rays’ roster for the trip to Cuba if that sort of thing is important to you. The one notable name is obviously minor leaguer Dayron Varona, who is from Cuba. [Imgur]
  • The Durham Bulls have a new dark blue alternate uniform that looks pretty sleek (ht @angry_buddha). [Adobe]
  • Buster Olney names utility man Taylor Motter as one of the “spring surprises” who is forcing himself “into the mix” of potentially making the roster. [ESPN Insider]
  • Former Rays closer Rafael Soriano is retiring. [NBC Sports]

The guys at “Intentional Talk” discussed the Rays and their potential to be a surprise team in 2016.





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