September is here and with the arrival of the new month, major league rosters expanded from their 25 man limit to being able to have up to 40 active players at a time.
The Rays first wave of call-ups include RHP Ryne Stanek, LHP Adam Kolarek, and C Curt Casali.
Ryne Stanek was the 29th selection in the 2013 draft for the Rays and overcame several injuries early on in his professional career to become a potential lights out reliever for the Rays. He has the ability to reach triple digits with his fastball, while he also can bring a devastating splitter to the mix now as well. So far over 13 games for the Rays this season, Stanek has allowed 9 runs on 19 hits, including five home runs, while he has walked seven and struck out 16 over 12.2 innings pitched.
Adam Kolarek was a 2010 11th round draft pick by the New York Mets, but it took him until 2017 with the Rays to finally make his major league debut. Able to get LHB with ease and generate a ridiculous amount of groundballs, Kolarek will have a set role in the Rays bullpen.
Curt Casali — back before the start of spring training — looked primed to be the Rays starting catcher this year. But then the Rays brought in Jesus Sucre and Derek Norris, and Casali quickly became the third best option. So far this year in Durham, Casali’s power has disappeared as he has switched to a more contact oriented approach. He has slashed .263/.351/.347 with 5 HR over 85 games.
This is just the Rays’ first wave of call-ups as they’ll be promoting players for most of the month of September. The Durham Bulls are still playing and are heading for the playoffs so they’ll be busy at least until mid-September. These three players the Rays promoted are not superstars, but they fill a role for the Rays and will make them a better team overall.