rglass44 is what you call a ringer. I'm pretty sure he can still post his thoughts to the front page whenever he wants, but he doesn't, which I suppose is considerate. So I'm going to do that for him. Quick look, nice graph. It's amazing what park effects can make you not realize. -Ian
There's been a lot of talk of late about the Rays' inability to develop bats largely due to the fact that the Rays have yet to have a player from the 2008 or 2009 draft break in to the majors. Prior to this season, there was also a lot of complaints about Rays' hitting coach Derek Shelton's lack of success. With the offense humming, it seems like something must be amiss in these observations. Below is a quick look at the Rays' offense since the team's first year in 1998 along with where they ranked in payroll:
The payroll aspect is fairly obvious. The Rays are consistently in the lower half save one year of The Hit Show. Until Friedman and Co. took over in 2005, the offense was also a bottom half fixture. Every year save one since Friedman took over the offense has been in the top 10. A lot was made in 2008 of the players drafted during the Lamar era, but with the exit of all of them the offense has consistently hung in the top 10. The Rays now have 0 players on the roster acquired under Lamar, and we currently have the strongest offense we've ever had. The Rays get production from across the player acquisition spectrum: drafted and developed by the Rays (Longoria and Jennings), players acquired with little to no big experience (Joyce, Zobrist, Lobaton, S-Rod), and Big League acquisitions (Loney, Johnson, Scott). So despite being near the bottom of the barrel for their ability to spend to acquire talent the Rays continuously pump out high octane offenses when you adjust for park and league.