So as it turns out, yesterday was something of a tease. The Rays' pitchers and catchers reported, but very little baseballs actually got thrown around; the biggest news of the day was that Joe Maddon and Andrew Friedman held a midday press conference. Physicals were done and such, and the Rays set themselves up to have their first workout with all their pitchers and catchers today.
John Gregg will be at spring training camp over the next handful of days, and he'll be passing along some of his observations and notes both here and at Rays Digest. If you don't already, check out RD and follow along throughout the day. They already have an interesting piece up on Tim Beckham and his 2012 hopes.
And if you missed it yesterday, the other "news" right now is that Wade Davis is seemingly reluctant to move to the bullpen. Obviously we'll see how things play out over Spring Training, and at the end of the day, he's a professional and will have to adjust if the Rays decide to use him there. It's something to keep in the back of the mind, though.
- The Yankees signed Raul Ibanez yesterday to a one year, $1.1 million deal (could reach $4 million with incentives). Ibanez's strength is in his power, so he should improve the Yankees' lineup against right-handed pitchers, especially in Yankee Stadium.
- Manny-bay is back! Except this time, Manny's taking his talents to the Bay Area, signing a minor-league deal with the Oakland A's. Hey, why not? The A's could use some extra oomph in their lineup, and Manny comes cheap right now.
- BetOnline has released their over/under lines for team win totals, and the Rays come in tied with the Red Sox at 87.5 wins. Both teams are considerably behind the Yankees (93 wins). Maybe I'm mis-remembering, but I believe this is a considerably higher rating than the Rays were given last season (mid to low 80s?).
- Maddon: "[The Rays are] very capable of going back to the World Series."
- I can't believe I forgot to highlight this aggregated prospect list over at Rays Prospects. I'm interested to see what it looks like now with Kevin Goldstein's rankings, especially considering Goldstein was a bit more pessimistic on some players.
- Yossi Feins takes a retrospective look at all the moves the Rays made this off-season. Warning: it's a slideshow, but I think it works well for this format. And he hits upon each move in some depth, so it's a good refresher -- especially about some of the things that happened multiple months ago at this point.