About this time each year we try to make the call-up case for one or more member of the Durham Bulls who is not on the Rays 40-man roster. Folks who’ve been around for a while will recall Chris Richard, or Leslie Anderson, or even Jon Weber.
You will also note that WDBB has been notably unsuccessful in its endeavor — but not for lack of trying.
We listed the current Bulls who are on the 40-man a couple of days ago.
We tend to look at these players from the narrow-minded view of the Durham Bulls, recognizing that Durham Bull-ness is not a particularly big deal to Rays management. If the Rays are going to do what it takes to put a player on the 40-man (i.e., dump a player who is now on the 40-man), they need a reason. Well, we’re not going to try to make that argument for them. What we want to do is ask you, Bulls fans, who’s the guy you think should be in a Rays uniform this September because he was a terrific Durham Bull.
Here are the hitters from the current crew who are not on the 40-man [Note: I've left Joey Rikard off, not because he doesn't have terrific numbers, but he only has 68 plate appearances.]
And my choice — Taylor Motter.
Most of statistical reasons are obvious, especially the wRAA above. In addition to these stats, he leads leads the team (and the International League) in doubles with 36. He leads the team in RBI with 66 and that's 5th in the IL. His number of stolen bases (26) also leads the team and that's tied for 5th in the IL. Although most of his 113 games have been in right field, most recently he's been spending a good bit of time at 3B. He's got games at 2B, SS, LF and CF as well. And his hair is almost as good as (better than?) John Jaso's.
So, he's our 2015 non-roster pick among the hitters.
We'll get to the pitchers another day.