The following tweet from Rays director of communications Dave Haller is a few days old, but the contents of said tweet shall echo throughout baseball forevermore.
Last start by Rays pitcher who signed as major league FA? Wilson Alvarez on 7/14/02 vs. SEA. 10+ years later, R.Hernandez could end streak.— Dave Haller (@HallerDave) February 21, 2013
Once more, for maximum emphasis: A pitcher acquired on the major-league free-agent market hasn't made a start for the Rays since Wilson Alvarez back in 2002. That's more than a decade of starting nothing but homegrown pitchers, those acquired in trade and those rescued from the heap o' scrap. There is but one word for this: astounding.
Back in 2002, the Rays were the Devil Rays, Greg Vaughn was still on the roster, and people still talked about Justin Guarini. It has, suffice it to say, been a long time.
In closing: Wilson Alvarez.
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