Rays Notes: Desmond Jennings, Carlos Pena

Talking to Jim Bowden of MLB Home Plate (Twitter link), Rays Senior VP of Baseball Operations Gerry Hunsicker said it would take extraordinary circumstances for top prospect Desmond Jennings to play in the Majors this year.  Jennings is regarded by most as the sixth-best prospect in the game, and it seemed quite possible that he'd muscle his way into the outfield picture this summer.  If Jennings is expected to remain in Triple A, perhaps Carl Crawford is less likely to be traded (although maybe a Crawford trade qualifies as an extraordinary circumstance).

Both Crawford and Carlos Pena will be eligible for free agency after the season, and Hunsicker told Bowden it will be very difficult to retain both.  Rays owner Stuart Sternberg is on record saying, "We're going to do everything we can to make sure [Crawford] stays here longer."  And Rays president Matt Silverman said the team is currently focused on Crawford, with talks ongoing.  That doesn't necessarily make Pena a midseason trade candidate, as the Rays need his bat to contend.  Pena told Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times today that he hopes to stay with the Rays beyond 2010 and is extremely grateful for the opportunity no matter what happens.

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