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Rays sign RHP Sam Runion to minor league deal.

No, I couldn't find a picture of Sam Runion.
No, I couldn't find a picture of Sam Runion.
Mike Ehrmann

When Alex Rodriguez stormed out of the courtroom, he thought he would have the baseball headlines all to himself. It was a surprising oversight by him and his strategy team, though, as the baseball world was already buzzing; the news cycle was already saturated:

Yes, the Rays have signed Sam Runion, the man who once out-dueled Madison Bumgarner in high school, the man drafted in between Mike Moustakas and Danny Duffy by the Royals in 2007, and the man who Baseball America called at the time of his drafting: "a durable long reliever or set-up man in the mold of Dan Wheeler."

Almost all of the scouting reports I can find are from 2007 and 2008, and I think they all originate from Baseball America, but here is one report from the Ashville Citizen Times in 2009. Runion threw a low to mid 90s sinking fastball from a three-quarters arm slot, and both his breaking ball and his changeup were works-in-progress. After a promising start to his career, his stats quickly deteriorated, and he had Tommy John surgery in 2010.

Since then, his numbers have improved, although he hasn't regained his prospect status. In 2013, Runion struck out 20% of the batters he faced as a 24 year old in double-A while walking just under 6%. He'll likely continue his quest to reignite his career in Durham or Montgomery.

You can read Dan's take on the Mark Lowe signing here, and Victor Mateo was already in the Rays organization.

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