Tag:Evan Longoria
Posted on: February 22, 2011 11:23 pm

Getting to know the Rays


With several key departures, Evan Longoria is going to be called upon to shoulder the burden more than ever. The 25-year-old third baseman is plenty capable. His two gold gloves, offensive pedigree and leadership skills -- notice the dugout spat last year with B.J. Upton began when Longoria quietly told Upton to hustle. It's time now for Longoria to take another step toward becoming more than just a team MVP. He finished fourth in league MVP voting last year. And he dipped to 22 home runs.

-- Quinton McCracken to B.J. Upton

McCracken played with Grant Balfour for the 2001 Minnesota Twins

Balfour played with Upton on the 2010 Rays

[Note: We were severely hampered here with the Rays coming into existence in 1998 and Mike DiFelice and Dan Wheeler being on both early and late incarnations of the Rays]


The Rays were largely ignored for their early years, as they struggled to get the win total past the mid-60s. Lately, though, we've seen an increased presence -- namely Longoria's Jason Bourne-like tracking of his cap in the New Era commercial . But we've all seen that. Let's go with a cartoon called "Defenders of the Game," starring the voices of several Rays players and manager Joe Maddon. Check out season two, episode one below.

-- Matt Snyder

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Category: MLB
Posted on: December 11, 2010 12:57 pm

Longoria open to career Rays deal

Evan Longoria
Maybe I'm a skeptic (OK, I'm definitely a skeptic), but Evan Longoria's comments in this St. Petersburg Times story seem ... let's call it "conveniently timed."

"Tampa Bay is the place I want to be for the rest of my career if I can," the Rays third baseman said. "If there's an opportunity to do something like that, I would think long and hard about it."

The story came out the day the Red Sox announced their monster signing of Carl Crawford, the most iconic player in the Rays' short history. The mantle of Rays cornerstone now passes to Longoria, the 25-year-old who has been an All-Star in each of his three seasons.

Is Longoria looking at the sense of loss being felt in Rays-ville and seeing an opportunity to improve on a contract he probably regrets signing?

Just six days after making his major-league debut in 2008, Longoria signed a contract with options that allow Tampa Bay to keep him through 2016, three years past what would have been his first year of free agency. That contract is a huge bargain for the team -- the maximum they would have to pay him is $44 million, for nine years. He made just $950,000 this year and would have been a Super Two this winter, making him arbitration-eligible. He'll earn $2.5 million next season, much less than he would have earned in arbitration, and he'll be a big bargain in his other would-be arbitration-eligible years as well.

That contract cost Longoria untold millions. So does he look at the monster $119 million extension recently signed by Troy Tulowitzki (described as Longoria's friend in the Times piece) and think a "lifetime" deal looks pretty good? No doubt. And if the Rays are in the mood to placate the fan base right about now, hey, nothing wrong with floating the idea.

-- David Andriesen

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Posted on: November 11, 2010 12:52 pm
Edited on: November 12, 2010 11:10 am

MLB Facts & Rumors American League MVP

The major baseball awards will be announced next week, and the staff at MLB Facts and Rumors is making our choices this week. Today, David, Evan and Trent name their American League Most Valuable Player selections. As with the BBWAA awards, a first-place vote is worth 14 points, second place nine, third place eight and so forth, with 10th place getting one point.

The American League MVP would have been easy if the season ended int he first week of September, but that's when Josh Hamilton crashed into a wall and broke a few ribs, sidelining him for nearly a month. Was that enough to give Detroit's Miguel Cabrera the MVP? Or was Jose Bautista's 54-homer season good enough to win the honor?


Josh Hamilton David Andriesen
1. Josh Hamilton, Rangers
2. Miguel Cabrera, Tigers
3. Adrian Beltre, Red Sox
4. Jose Bautista, Blue Jays
5. Robinson Cano, Yankees
6. Evan Longoria, Rays
7. Paul Konerko, White Sox
8. Carl Crawford, Rays
9. Shin-Soo Choo, Indians
10. Joe Mauer, Twins

Hamilton led all of baseball in batting average and WAR (wins above replacement), while playing center field and dealing with nagging injuries. Yes, he only played 133 regular-season games, but Joe Mauer won last year with 135. Cabrera was scary good, finishing in the top
three in every Triple Crown category, but Hamilton played better with more on the line.

Evan Brunell
1. JoshHamilton, Rangers
2. Miguel Cabrera, Tigers
3. Jose Bautista, Blue Jays
4. Adrian Beltre, Red Sox
5. Robinson Cano, Yankees
6. Evan Longoria, Rays
7. Shin-Soo Choo, Indians
8. Carl Crawford, Rays
9. Paul Konerko, White Sox
10. Daric Barton, Athletics

Hamilton had a sublime season, leading baseball in batting average (.359) and slugging percentage (.633). In counting stats, his 30 HR and 100 RBI don't exactly blow anyone off the map, but don't forget he missed most of September.

C. Trent Rosecrans
1.  Josh Hamilton, Rangers
2. Miguel Cabrera, Tigers
3. Evan Longoria, Rays
4. Robinson Cano, Yankees
5. Jose Bautista, Blue Jays
6. Felix Hernandez, Mariners
7. Adrian Beltre, Red Sox
8. Shin-Soo Choo, Indians
9. Joe Mauer, Twins
10. Paul Konerko, White Sox

Hamilton missed most of September, but it didn't really mean anything to his team, because he was so good until that point that the Rangers had a cushion. There were other players with really good years, Cabrera and Cano among them, but they were still behind what Hamilton's amazing season. I think Longoria sometimes gets overlooked, but he doesn't deserve the nod over Hamilton. I do find it interesting that I'm the only one with a pitcher listed.

MLB Facts and Rumors American League Most Valuable Player
As good a season as Cabrera had, it's a runaway for Hamilton, who was unanimous in our small poll, followed by Miguel Cabrera and Jose Bautista. That said, expect Cabrera and maybe even Cano to garner first-place votes when the BBWAA announces its winners on Nov. 23, but Hamilton will still likely win by a comfortable margin.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: November 9, 2010 4:06 pm
Edited on: April 18, 2011 12:28 pm

Jeter wins another Gold Glove

Oh, as we complain again and again about the Baseball Writers Association of America and their votes for MVP and Cy Young, the coaches and managers once again show they're not a better committee to choose the biggest awards in the game.

Exhibit A: Derek Jeter, Gold Glover.

Derek Jeter Yep, Jeter won the Gold Glove again on Tuesday in a vote from American League coaches and managers. Derek Jeter with a -5.4 UZR/150, -13 runs saved and -17 plus/minus, was determined by the coaches and managers to be the best defensive shortstop in the American League. Among qualified players, only Tampa Bay's Jason Bartlett (-13.8) and Kansas City's Yuniesky Betancourt (-9.2) had a worse UZR/150.

Sure, Jeter had just six errors, but the idea that errors tell you much about a player's defense is preposterous. It tells you who is able to make the routine plays best. That's well and good, but it has little to do with the best all-around defensive player. Jeter has the range of, well, a mediocre 36-year old defensive player. (You know how many times you see Jeter go into the hole and doing that leaping throw, but doesn't quite get the runner? Oh, what a gutty play, he doesn't get an E. Thing is, most other shortstops don't have to make that jump and get the runner.)

Who would be a better choice? Well, who wouldn't?

The Fielding Bible Awards had Chicago's Alexei Ramirez as its third-place finisher, and best among AL players. Ramirez's UZR/150 was 10.1, he had 16 runs saved and a 20 plus/minus.

In UZR/150, Ramirez was trailed by Oakland's Cliff Pennington (8.8), Baltimore's Cesar Izturis (5.8) and Texas' Elvis Andrus (0.3), among qualified players.

The Gold Gloves have been one of those openly mocked selections since a designated hitter won one in 1999 (Rafael Palmeiro). Defense, even in this day and age of advanced statistics, is still highly subjective, with reputation playing more of a role than production. That's what the Gold Glove tells us every year. It also tells us the coaches and managers have as much of a Yankee bias as the media is accused of having.

Alex Rodriguez was the only Yankee infielder not to be awarded, even though the advanced statistics liked Oakland's infield much more.

Mark Teixeira won at first base, even though Oakland's Daric Barton was likely the best choice. Mark Ellis had the top UZR/150 among second basemen (12.7), but the winner was Robinson Cano (-0.9).  Also deserving at second would be Minnesota's Orlando Hudson (12.0 UZR/150). Hudson was the top AL vote-getter in the Fielding Bible Awards, while Ellis was behind him.

As for the outfield, that's probably where a Yankee was actually left off. Left fielder Brett Gardner had the best UZR/150 of any qualified outfielders with a 27.9. He also won the Fielding Bible Award in left field.

American League Gold Glove winners
P Mark Buehrle, White Sox
C Joe Mauer, Twins
1B Mark Teixeira, Yankees
2B Robinson Cano, Yankees
3B Evan Longoria, Rays
SS Derek Jeter, Yankees
OF Carl Crawford, Rays
OF Franklin Gutierrez, Mariners
OF Ichiro Suzuki, Mariners

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.

Posted on: November 4, 2010 4:19 pm
Edited on: April 18, 2011 12:32 pm

Bruce, O'Day among Super Twos

Brad Ziegler, the right-handed sidearmed reliever, is the lucky winner of the Super Two cutoff date this year with two years, 122 days of service time, according to the list sent to agents by the MLB Players Association. Super Two qualify for salary arbitration early.

The cutoff this season is lower than it has been in recent years, perhaps indicating that teams are getting more and more careful about how soon they bring up players in attempts to put off arbitration as long as possible.

Leading the list is Tampa Bay's Evan Longoria, who has already been signed to a long-term deal, a deal that's looking better and better by the day for the Rays.

Here's the list:

Jay Bruce Player 2009 Club Total Service
Evan Longoria Tampa Bay 2.170
Jim Johnson Baltimore 2.165
Felipe Paulino Houston 2.163
Josh Fields Kansas City 2.159
Kyle Kendrick Philadelphia 2.159
Sean White Seattle 2.156
Ian Stewart Colorado 2.154
Dana Eveland* Pittsburgh 2.152
Luke Hochevar Kansas City 2.151
Armando Galarraga Detroit 2.148
Burke Badenhop Florida 2.143
Ross Ohlendorf Pittsburgh 2.139
Chris Perez Cleveland 2.136
Alberto Gonzalez Washington 2.135
Jensen Lewis Cleveland 2.133
Darren O'Day Texas 2.128
Jay Bruce Cincinnati 2.125
Chase Headley San Diego 2.123
Travis Buck Oakland 2.123
Brad Ziegler Oakland 2.122

It appears that this is the best news for Bruce, O'Day and Perez, who will likely get the biggest bumps in salary from 2010 to 2011.

Of all those players, Bruce (pictured) may have had the best season, hitting .281/.353/.493 with 25 home runs. Perez recorded 23 saves and had a 1.71 ERA as the closer for the Indians once Kerry Wood was sent to the Yankees. O'Day was a valuable member of the Rangers' bullpen, appearing in 72 regular-season games and 11 postseason games. During the Regular season, he had a 2.03 ERA.

All three of those players made $440,000 or less last season.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: October 12, 2010 4:38 pm
Edited on: October 12, 2010 4:40 pm

Rangers-Rays Game 5 breakdown

The statistical breakdown of Game 5 of the ALDS, with the Yankees ready to take on the winner. (All stats from the regular season.)

Texas Rangers

Postseason stats: Hitting /Pitching

1. Elvis Andrus, SS
overall: .265/.342/.301 in 588 AB, 32 SB
vs. TB: /350/.435/.500 in 20 AB
on road: .268/.354/.292 in 284 AB,
against LHP: .268/.341/.301 in 153 AB

2. Michael Young, 3B
overall: .284/.330/.444 in 656 AB, 21 HR
vs. TB: .118/.118/.118 in 17 AB
on road: .260/.299/.380 in 334 AB
against LHP: .322/.374/.497 in 171 AB, 6 HR

Cliff Lee 3. Josh Hamilton, CF
overall: .359/.411/.633 in 518 AB, 32 HR
vs. TB: .300/.364/.700 in 20 AB, 2 HR
on road: .327/.382/.512 in 254 AB, 10 HR
against LHP: .271/.331/.458 in 166 AB

4. Vladimir Guerrero, DH
overall: .300/.345/.496 in 593 AB, 29 HR
vs. TB: .304/.333/.478 in 23 AB
on road: .284/.336/.461 in 282 AB, 13 HR
against LHP: .338/.395/.536 in 151 AB, 7 HR

5. Nelson Cruz, LF
overall: .318/.374/.576 in 399 AB, 22 HR
vs. TB: N/A
on road: .267/.324/.480 in 202 AB, 9 HR
against LHP: .330/.388/.587 in 109 AB, 21 RBI

6. Ian Kinsler, 2B
overall: .286/.382/.412 in 391 AB
vs. TB: .222/.417/.222 in 9 AB
on road: .257/.322/.388 in 206 AB
against LHP: .376/.473/.484 in 93 AB

7. Jeff Francoeur, RF
overall: .249/.300/.383 in 454 AB
vs. TB: N/A
on road: .270/.328/.405 in 237 AB
against LHP: .300/.363/.442 in 120 AB, 4 HR

9. Bengie Molina
overall: .240/.279/.320 in 175 AB
vs. TB: .333/.500/.500 in 6 AB
on road: .241/.292/.316 in 176 AB
against LHP: .350/.412/.420 in 100 AB

9. Mitch Moreland, 1B
overall: .255/.364/.469 in 145 AB
vs. TB: .111/.200/.444 in 9 AB
on road: .244/.330/.500 in 86 AB
against LHP: .200/.304/.300 in 20 AB

LHP Cliff Lee
overall: 12-9, 3.18 ERA, 3.23 xFIP, 212 1/3 IP
since joining TEX: 4-6, 3.98 ERA, 3.27 xFIP, 108 2/3 IP
vs. TB: 3 GS, 23 2/3 IP, 4.56 ERA, 2 BB, 25 K, 12 ER, 0 HR
on road: 7-6, 3.53 ERA, 3.49 xFIP, 112 1/3 IP

X-factor to win: This game comes down to the starting pitching. Lee won the first matchup, it's down to him and David Price.

Keep an eye on: Besides Lee? How about Josh Hamilton? He's 2 for 14 this series with two singles. He led the majors with a 1.044 OPS during the regular season, but has an OPS of .393 in the first four games.

Tampa Bay Rays

Postseason stats: Hitting /Pitching

1. Jason Bartlett, SS
overall: .254/.324/.350 in 532 AB
vs. TEX: .385/.429/.385 in 13 AB
at home: .272/.335/.346 in 217 AB
against LHP: .273/.355/.375 in 165 AB

2. Ben Zobrist. RF
overall: .238/.346/.353 in 541 AB
vs. TEX: .444/.615./500 in 18 AB
at home: .215/.345/.302 in 242 AB
against LHP: .247/.345/.349 in 166 AB

David Price 3. Carl Crawford, LF
overall: .307/.356/.495 in 600 AB, 110 R
vs. TEX: .222/.241/.407 in 27 AB
at home: .300/.352/.505 in 277 AB with 11 HR
against LHP: .256/.312/.384 in 203 AB

4. Evan Longoria, 3B
overall: .294/.372/.507 in 574 AB, 104 RBI
vs. TEX: .417/.464/.917 in 24 AB with 2 HR, 10 RBI
at home: .324/.403/.527 in 275 AB, 10 HR
against LHP: .324/.411/.545 in 176 AB with 5 HR

5. Carlos Pena, 1B
overall: .196/.325/.407 in 484 AB, 28 HR
vs. TEX: .174/.321/.348 in 23 AB
at home: .207/.335/.464 in 237 AB, 18 HR
against LHP: .179/.316/.359 in 156 AB

6. B.J. Upton, CF
overall: .237/.322/.424 in 536 AB, 42 SB
vs. TEX: .348/.444/.652 in 23 AB with 4 doubles
at home: .250/.339/.420 in 264 AB
against LHP: .278/.381/.538 in 169 AB

7. Dan Johnson, DH
overall: .198/.343/.414 in 111 AB
vs. TEX: .250/.400/.250 in 4 AB
at home: .190/.284/.431 in 58 AB
against LHP: .235/.391/.471 in 17 AB with 1 home run

8. Kelly Shoppach, C
overall: .196/.308/.342 in 159 AB
vs. TEX: .154/.313/.321 in 13 AB
at home: .218/.296/.414 in 87 AB
against LHP: .261/.375/.455 in 88 AB, 4 HR

9. Sean Rodriguez, 2B
overall: .251/.308/.397 in 343 AB
vs. TEX: .278/.278/.444 in 18 AB
at home: .244/.318/.398 in 176 AB
against LHP: .292/.375/.442 in 120 AB

LHP David Price
overall: 19-6, 2.72 ERA, 3.99 xFIP, 208 2/3 IP
vs. TEX: 1 GS, 6 IP, 5 H, 2 ER (3.00 ERA), 5 BB, 8 K
at home: 9-2, 1.96 ERA, 3.64 xFIP, 114 2/3 IP

X-factor to win: I'll repeat what was said for the Rangers: "This game comes down to the starting pitching. Lee won the first matchup, it's down to him and David Price."

Keep an eye on: Besides Price? Let's stick with the mirror images -- Evan Longoria. Like Hamilton, he's coming off an injury and hasn't played up to his capabilities. He's 4 for 16 in the first four games, but does have a homer and two doubles.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: September 28, 2010 5:50 pm

Rays giving away 20,000 free tickets

Rays third baseman Evan Longoria and called Monday night's attendance of 12,446 at Tropicana Field on a night Tampa had a chance to clinch its division "embarrassing."

Pitcher David Price used the same word in a tweet about the empty seats.

What will be really embarrassing is if the Rays don't have more than that on Wednesday -- since the team is giving away 20,000 tickets for the team's final home game of the season.

Team president Matt Silverman told the St. Petersburg Times ' Marc Topkin the team was doing so in response to the fans' reaction to the comments made by Price and Longoria.

It won't be a shock to see a full house Wednesday, throughout the playoffs and on Opening Day. After that? Back to the same 12,000 folks Longoria and Price are used to seeing.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .

Posted on: September 27, 2010 11:14 pm
Edited on: October 19, 2010 11:57 am

Players criticize (lack of) fans

A couple of crowds on Monday night were not what some of the people on the field wanted them to be, and the players made it known.

The Rays had a chance to clinch a playoff berth with a win at home against the Orioles, and just 12,446 showed up. And it really wasn't even that many -- remember that baseball uses "tickets sold" as attendance, so season tickets count whether the people show up or not. The crowd was just over half Tampa Bay's season average of 23,047.

Rays ace David Price took to his personal Twitter account to complain, writing "Had a chance to clinch a post season spot tonight with about 10,000 fans in the stands....embarrassing."

Tampa third baseman Evan Longoria told the St. Petersburg Times that the small crowds down the stretch are "disheartening" and embarrassing."

In Washington, there were a few more fans -- 14,309. What troubled the Nationals was that way too many of them were Phillies fans there to watch their team clinch the National League East title.

The Washington Post quoted Nats shortstop Ian Desmond as saying it was "kind of embarrassing when everyone in the stadium is clapping against you when you’re at home."

Outfielder Nyjer Morgan had this to say to natsinsider.com:
"Damn, it was a lot louder at our place than it was at their place when we go there. It felt it was a home game for the Phillies."

It's not generally a good business practice to criticize the customers, but sometimes frustration takes over.

UPDATE: After his comment spread across the internet, Price tweeted: "If I offended anyone I apologize I did not think it was gonna turn into this ..."

-- David Andriesen

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com