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Chris Archer defends the Rays

". . . if anybody wants to debate that I can sit down and I can lay the numbers out for you."

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

As the baseball season approaches, the Rays have begun making rounds with the media, and Chris Archer has done a lot of defending.

Last weekend he was featured on MLB Network, discussing the potential for the 2015 team and spinning repetitive questions about Joe Maddon leaving into opportunities to praise the new look Rays.

Then, speaking with the local media, he was quick to defend Matt Moore, who was not in front of the camera. He would need space, he would need time, but he's really good and will continue to be really good. That sort of thing.

That video clip was only a minute long, but the whole piece was more than seven, and as he spoke with the media, Archer became a staunch defender of what management has done to build the Rays into a contender in 2015.

What he had to say should resonate in the soul of every reader here:

If you are more than a casual observer and you're more of an analytical type fan or you just have more of an analytical perspective, you'll see that the team is actually better than than we were at the start of 2013, 2014, and you know if anybody wants to debate that I can sit down and I can lay the numbers out for you.

Defensively? Better.

Offensively? More depth.

Starting pitching staff? We have more experience, which allows us to be more comfortable in tough situations.

Our bullpen? We'll be bringing guys in in the sixth and seventh inning that are closers, that are capable of closing for other ballclubs. So I like the depth of our team I like the depth of our bullpen.

I mean, every team has strengths and weaknesses. Toronto's strength is their offense. Boston's strength, this year, is their offense.

It's not as glamorous to have pitching and defense be your strength, but when it's this good? It should be glamorous.

He said in 168 words what we should all feel. This team can be great, it could win the division. Ya gotta believe.

You can listen to the full interview here: