After finishing a respectable 90-72 record in 2012, the Rays are returning to action in 2013 with hopes of reaching the playoffs. However, achieving that goal may have gotten much harder after the offseason with the loss of star pitcher James Shields, who joined the Kansas City Royals, and BJ Upton, who is now playing with his brother, Justin, in Atlanta.
But returning faces for 2013 are none other than the 2012 AL Cy Young winner David Price and All-Star slugger, Evan Longoria. Longoria fresh off a $100 million contract extension and hamstring surgery, will have to stay healthy and on the field as much as possible if the Rays want to make the playoffs.
“Longoria said last week that he has recovered well from hamstring surgery and will be in Port Charlotte when pitchers and catchers report Feb 12.,” said Marc Topkin, the Rays beat writer for the Tampa Bay Times.
It is clear that if the Rays want a chance in the AL East this season, they must stay healthy and stay focused. The East has always been a tough division. Now, it has only gotten tougher with the revamped Orioles, bolstered Blue Jays, and consistently tough Yankees and Red Sox. One thing is for sure, this season’s race for the AL East pennant will be one to pay attention to.