Few Question Marks for Rays

Spring Training begins in a little over two weeks and the Rays will head to Port Charlotte with the fewest question marks for their roster in team history if they begin the season with 12 pitchers and 13 position players.

If injuries do not occur, the Rays’ starting rotation seems solid with Shields, Garza, Price, Niemann and Davis and the bullpen seems equally solid with Soriano, Howell, Cormier, Choate, Wheeler, Balfour, and, probably Sonnanstine.

The infield appears as though it will be Longoria, Bartlett, Zobrist and Pena. Catching will see Navarro and Shoppach. And the outfield looks like Crawford and Upton in left and center with Kapler and Joyce splitting time in right. Pat Burrell will be the DH. That leaves two remaining open spots.

You have to figure that Aybar will grab one of those spots and the team will need a backup shortstop if Zobrist is to be the everyday second baseman. Reid Brignac or Sean Rodriguez will likely fill that role.

Should be interesting to see if one of the outfielders, Fernando Perez, Desmond Jennings or Justin Ruggiano can break through into what appears to be a pretty solid 25-man roster.

Playing the game of filling in the Rays’ hypothetical roster isn’t near as challenging as it once was, huh?

— Bill Chastain

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