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Tampa Bay Rays News and Links: Shawn Camp edition

Baltimore Orioles vs Tampa Bay Devil Rays - July 23, 2006 Photo by A. Messerschmidt/Getty Images

Rays Stuff:

Remember Leslie Anderson? He was signed by the Rays out of Cuba before the 2010 season, and he played four seasons in the Rays system, mostly in Durham. His offensive numbers were always very good, and I was surprised he never got even a cup of coffee. After all his tenure included the year the team went with Drew Sutton and Rich Thompson, a year when Anderson had a slash line of .309/.355/.450. At any rate, after playing in Japan and Mexico, Anderson has returned to Cuba to coach.

The Rays are helping us get through these weeks by creating a Rays YouTube playlist:

Here’s a chance to own a piece of Devil Rays history and contribute to two worthy causes:

Was looking for something else on You Tube and came across this feature on a very young Evan Longoria. Interesting that he had attracted so little attention out of high school but was considered a top prospect just a few years later:

Baseball Stuff

Dan Szymborski, the father of Zips, uses his down time to look back and see how well his system has predicted team wins.

Remembering (Devil) Rays noteworthy seasons

In past weeks I’ve written about players I admire and think of fondly as part of successful Rays season.

Today I’m going in a different direction. Ladies and gentlemen, I bring you Shawn Camp. I have only awful memories of Camp’s 2007. I was far less into analysis back into 2007 so I couldn’t have said, at that time, why I thought he was terrible, but I recall that he seemed to blow every lead he was handed, and there was even something about his somewhat hangdog looking face that seemed to portend doom.

Now that I am better versed in pitcher “peripherals” and I recognize that sometimes players can be unlucky, I decided to look back on his 2007 season. Maybe he seemed terrible, but really wasn’t? After all, he managed a ten year major league career.

But it turns out, he was indeed pretty bad. He was a bit unlucky - that 7.20 ERA was accompanied by 5.29 FIP, suggesting that perhaps with better fielders he would have been just mediocre. He did strike out 8.1 batters per 9 innings — not elite but respectable. But he also walked 4.1 batters per 9 innings, hardly inspiring confidence.

Here he is pitching against the Yankees. This particular game was a blowout by the time he got in to it but still managed to put his stamp on it:

That he appeared in 50 games that season is evidence of the quality of that 2007 Devil Rays bullpen.

Be well, stay safe, and keep your distance.