Wendle worked on his arm strength this offseason with the intention of filling in more often at shortstop and third base in 2020, Josh Tolentino of The Athletic reports.
The versatile infielder enjoyed a solid spring (.259, two doubles, two home runs, three RBI, six runs) and is considered a lock to be on the team come Opening Day, especially with MLB reportedly preparing to allow teams to expand rosters to 29 players for at least the first month of the regular season. Wendle has experience playing up to five different positions, but he's spent the majority of his time at second base over the last two seasons. However, a stronger arm would certainly make him a more effective player when deployed on the left side of the infield, thus seemingly enhancing his job security.
Wendle, who's competing for an infield utility role this spring, is hitting .400 (6-for-15) with two doubles, one home run, two RBI and five runs over his first six Grapefruit League games.
The versatile 29-year-old endured the worst offensive season of his career in 2019, slashing a pedestrian .231/.293/.340 across 263 plate appearances over 75 games. Wendle struggled with hamstring and wrist injuries last season, which certainly played a part in his subpar performance. However, he reported to camp at full health, and despite the modest sample, his early work at the plate suggests Wendle may be returning to the form that saw him generate an impressive .300 average and .354 on-base percentage during his first Rays campaign back in 2018.
Wendle said Sunday that he enters spring training with no restrictions after an injury-plagued 2019 season, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports.
Though Wendle ended the past season on the field, the Rays were cautious with his usage down the stretch after he required three stints on the injured list, all of which were at least three weeks in length. Complications from a broken wrist in particular sapped Wendle's power, with the 29-year-old finishing the campaign with a lowly .633 OPS, a 156-point decline from 2018. After a full offseason to rest up and strengthen the wrist, Wendle believes he'll be back in top form. Wendle may not have a regular spot in the lineup waiting for him, however, as he'll likely be ticketed for top backup duties at three infield spots if the Rays are at full strength heading into Opening Day.
Wendle is not in the lineup for Game 3 of the American League Division Series against the Astros on Monday.
Wendle will sit for the second straight game Monday after starting just one of the team's postseason games so far. Yandy Diaz will start at third base and lead off.
Wendle is not in the lineup for Game 2 of the American League Division Series against the Astros on Saturday.
Wendle will get a breather Saturday after going 1-for-3 with a run in the first game of the ALDS on Friday. Yandy Diaz will start at third base and lead off.
Wendle is not in the lineup for Wednesday's Wild Card Game against Oakland, Josh Tolentino of The Athletic reports.
Wendle hits the bench as the Rays go with a righty-heavy lineup against lefty Sean Manaea. Matt Duffy starts at third base.
Wendle is out of the lineup for Sunday's game against the Blue Jays, Josh Tolentino of The Athletic reports.
Wendle has a .733 OPS over 23 games in September and will take a seat for the season finale. Matt Duffy receives another start at the hot corner in his place.
Wendle went 1-for-4 with a solo home run in a win over the Yankees on Wednesday.
Following a year-plus home-run drought at Tropicana Field, Wendle has now left the yard in two of his last four games there as part of his best stretch of hitting of the season by far. Wendle is still slashing just .229/.290/.342 in 2019, but considering those figures sat at .198/.275/.262 back on July 23, he's made notable strides at the plate during the most critical time of season for the Rays.
Wendle went 1-for-3 with a solo home run, two walks and two runs in a loss to the Red Sox on Sunday.
Wendle's 354-foot shot to left in the third marked his first time leaving the yard at Tropicana Field since Aug. 5, 2018, making it 59 games and 189 at-bats between round trippers on his home turf. The utility man's bat has heated up at the right time of the season after an extended slump, as he's now hitting .297 with four extra-base hits (two doubles, one triple, one home run) and six RBI in September to boost his season average 25 points to .234.
Wendle is not in the lineup for Friday's game against the Angels.
Wendle hits the bench with lefty Andrew Heaney on the mound for Los Angeles. Matt Duffy will get the start at third base.
Wendle went 2-for-5 an RBI single, a triple and a run in an extra-innings win over the Rangers on Tuesday.
Wendle continues to provide glimpses of the proficient hitter he'd proven to be over his first two seasons as the current campaign winds down. Tuesday's showing pushed his season average to .231, an admittedly mediocre figure that nevertheless is Wendle's highest of the season. The versatile 29-year-old has rediscovered his stroke in September, as he's now hitting .357 (10-for-28) over 29 plate appearances during the month and has a trio of multi-hit efforts in the last five games.
Wendle won't start Saturday against southpaw Anthony Kay and the Blue Jays, Juan Toribio of MLB.com reports.
Wendle owns a strong .314/.359/.514 slash line in 11 games since returning from a wrist injury. Matt Duffy will get the start at the hot corner.
Wendle who went 2-for-3 with a run in a win over the Blue Jays on Friday, is 7-for-18 with a double, an RBI, a walk, three stolen bases and six runs across the first six games of September.
The valued utility man's bat seems to finally be awakening from a season-long slumber, and at a crucial time at that. Wendle has already boosted his season average 18 points to .227 with his current surge, and he's hit safely in nine of 10 starts since returning from the injured list due to a wrist issue.
Wendle isn't in the starting lineup for Game 1 of Tuesday's doubleheader against Baltimore, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports.
Wendle will head to the bench with the Rays electing to implement an all-right-handed lineup against lefty Ty Blach. Matt Duffy is in line to man the hot corner and hit sixth.
Wendle went 1-for-3 with a walk and three runs in a win over the Orioles on Monday.
Wendle turned in a prototypical leadoff effort, setting the table effectively and crossing the plate on a home run by Austin Meadows and on Tommy Pham's pair of run-scoring hits. Wendle continues to scuffle at the plate overall this season, but he's hit safely in six of seven games since returning from a wrist injury.
Wendle went 1-for-4 with an RBI and a stolen base in the Rays' 8-2 win over the Indians on Sunday.
Wendle has hit safely in eight of his last 10 games yet has only mustered up a slash line of .250/.263/.472 over that span due in part to the fact that he's only had one multi-hit game in that same stretch of games. He continues to be rotated in and out of the lineup with fellow third baseman Matt Duffy as they continue to split time at the hot corner.
Wendle is not in the lineup Saturday against the Indians, Neil Solondz of the Rays Radio Network reports.
Wendle has yet to start consecutive games since returning from the injured list earlier in the month, and that trend will continue Saturday, with Matt Duffy getting the nod in his place at third base.
Wendle is out of the lineup for Thursday's game against the Astros, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports.
After Wendle was reinstated from the injured list last weekend, Topkin predicted that the infielder would be unlikely to play more than two consecutive days the rest of the way after enduring a litany of injuries this season. That plan has held true thus far, as Wendle will head to the bench after logging starts Tuesday and Wednesday. Matt Duffy will enter the lineup at third base while Wendle rests up.
Wendle went 1-for-3 with a triple, a run-scoring sacrifice fly and a run in a loss to the Astros on Wednesday.
Wendle opened the scoring on the night with his second-inning sacrifice fly and subsequently laced his first three-bagger of the season off Gerrit Cole in the seventh inning. The triple was particularly encouraging with respect to the apparent health of his previously ailing wrist, especially considering it came one night after he belted a solo home run.
Wendle went 1-for-4 with a solo home run in Tuesday's 15-1 loss to the Astros.
His seventh-inning shot off Brad Peacock was the only offense Tampa could muster on the night, and it was also Wendle's first homer in an injury-plagued campaign. The infielder is slashing only .208/.273/.295 through 48 games, a disappointing follow-up to his impressive rookie campaign in 2018. Due to the Rays' extensive depth in the infield and in recognition of his struggles to stay healthy this season, Wendle is expected to be limited to playing no more than two games in a row the rest of the way, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
|10/10/2019 vs Houston|
|vs Buchholz (Career)||2||2||0||1.000||1.000||1.000|
|Last 7 Games|
|Complete Game Log|
|More Batting Stats|
|Minor League Batting Stats|
|2012||ASX-Mahoning Valley Scra||61||245||32||80||15||4||4||37||15||25||4||1||.327||.374||.469|
|2019||AFA-Charlotte Stone Crab||3||11||3||4||1||0||1||3||2||1||1||0||.364||.462||.727|