The Rays Tank: 56 days until Spring Training

J. Meric

We wish you a Merry Thanksmas, we wish you a Merry Thanksmas, we wish you a Merry Thanksmas, and a Happy New Year.

Twas a slow day in Rays-related news yesterday, but Joe Maddon kicked off his annual Thanksmas festivities around the Tampa Bay area:

Former Rays and the AL East

- Though the Rockies were rumored to be in talks prior to their deal with Boone Logan last week ($16.5 million over three years), J.P. Howell agreed to a two year deal with the Dodgers plus a vesting option, which would guarantee Howell $11.25 million, with a $6.25 million salary in 2016 if he makes at least 120 appearances the first two seasons.

- Pending a physical, Brian Roberts and the Yankees have a one year deal in place for around $2 million dollars, with New York still looking for more infield help:

- Shane Victorino underwent thumb surgery to correct a nerve in his right thumb, but is expected to be back in action for the Red Sox by Spring Training.

Links:

- Dave Schoenfield gave 10 predictions for the rest of the off season, with the Rays trading David Price to the Mariners for we-will-not-trade-him number one prospect Taijuan Walker coming in at number two. Other predictions of note: Mariners also signing Nelson Cruz, Rangers signing Shin-Soo Choo, Matt Garza going to the Angels, Orioles signing Grant Balfour.

- Rob Neyer discussed extreme infield shifts and the effect the growing trend has on power hitters, specifically the frequency with which they bunt.

- Chris St. John has been doing a series at Beyond the Box Score on the success of minor league players in the Majors based on their walks, strikeouts and age.

- Insider piece, but Buster Olney looked at Mike Trout, the disputed/undisputed "best player in baseball" and the future that is soon approaching RE: a long term deal with the Angels.

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