Hold onto your hats, everyone, as this news is sure to shock: Casey Fossum is back in the AL East. After spending the spending the entire 2010 season in Japan and dropping out of baseball midway through the 2011 season for some soul-searching, he has decided to keep plugging away with his career and has signed a minor-league deal with the Orioles.
At 34 years old, what are the odds the Rays face Fossum again in the majors? Well, virtually non-existent. Fossum hasn't been an effective major league pitcher since around 2005...and even then, he posted a 4.92 ERA and 4.56 FIP. Out of the bullpen, he can likely be an effective-ish LOOGY, but the homerun bug kills him all the time. In reality, Fossum is signing on to be a minor-league journeyman, with the off-chance of making the Orioles' bullpen if their roster implodes.
There aren't many former Devil Rays lurking around the majors anymore, so I always get hit with a bit of nostalgia whenever I see news about Fossum. Sure, you can argue that guys like James Shields, Carlos Pena, Ben Zobrist, and Johnny Gomes also played on the Devil Rays, but I'm talking about players that embodied the hopelessness of that era. You know, the real Devil Rays.
Oh, and as R.J. pointed out on Twitter last night: Casey Fossum has a job in baseball, and Scott Kazmir does not. Four years ago, who could have seen this coming?
- Tampa Bay local and boxing legend Angelo Dundee died last night at the age of 90. He trained both Muhammad Ali and Sugar Ray Leonard, and he's a member of the Boxing Hall of Fame. He'd been active in the local community -- among other things, he was slated to attend Friday night's Dinner with David Price -- and his presence will definitely be missed.
- The Rays are one of the best teams in the majors at extracting positive value from all their players. We've always known that to be true, but Beyond the Boxscore managed to capture that fact in a nifty graphic.
- If the Rays played in the National League, how much do you want to bet that Friedman would have been all over Micah Owings? The Rays value versatility so much, and what can be more versitile than having a pitcher that can actually hit well?