Ramos is among the top catchers in baseball and was voted as the American League’s starting catcher in the All-Star Game. Unfortunately, in the final series before the break, Ramos tweaked his hamstring and has been on the disabled list since.
Accordingly, the trade return has been expected to be of the PTBNL variety, based on games played as he returns to form, not much unlike the deal the Rays structured for Jesse Crain in 2013.
Given the salary owed to Ramos, and with the Rays out of contention, this move is as much about salary relief as it is the PTBNL (which may be converted to cash). To finish the season, Ramos will be owed approximately $3.5 million, with multiple $250k bonuses possible if he fulfills all his incentives, such as reaching 500 PA.
I am told the Phillies will not be giving up a member of their Top 30 prospects list. https://t.co/GI3WM7WM5n— Jonathan Mayo (@JonathanMayo) July 31, 2018
Ramos signed with the Rays as a free agent during the 2016-2017 off-season as he recovered from a torn ACL. If not for that injury, Ramos would have almost certainly received much better offers from other teams across the league, but the injury kept him out for half of the 2017 season, and to facilitate his rehabilitation, Ramos signed a two-year bounce back deal to be the No. 1 catcher in Tampa Bay.
Since that time, Ramos has now been healthy for over a year (save the hamstring strain), and has excelled for the Rays offensively, with a 114 wRC+ over his 539 plate appearances dating back to June 2017.
Overall in 2018, Ramos has hit .297/.346/.488 with 14 HR over 315 plate appearances, accruing a total of 1.8 fWAR and 130 wRC+.
Per the team press release, Ramos leads AL catchers with 87 hits despite his stint on the disabled list. He is tied for 2nd among AL catchers in home runs, tied for 1st in RBI and tied for 3rd with 28 extra-base hits. His 14 HR this season matched John Flaherty (14) in 1999 for the franchise’s single-season record among catchers.
This is the 5th trade of the deadline-season and second trade of the day for the Rays after they acquired outfielder Tommy Pham earlier this morning in exchange for a trio of prospects.