Rays Making Serious Run At Josh Willingham

3:04pm: The Rays are making a serious run at Willingham, tweets Crasnick.  Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports adds that while the Rays are not close on Willingham, they're one of three to four finalists.

2:21pm: Nine teams have called on free agent outfielder Josh Willingham, tweets ESPN's Jerry Crasnick, including the Twins, Red Sox, Indians, and Reds.  The Pirates have also been linked to him.  Willingham is something of a backup plan for the Red Sox and Twins, suggests Crasnick, as those teams are trying to re-sign David Ortiz and Michael Cuddyer, respectively.  ESPN 1500's Phil Mackey tweets that nothing is currently brewing with the Twins and Willingham.  The Indians' interest has been mild, tweets MLB.com's Jordan Bastian.  The Reds' interest in Willingham is "simmering on the back burner, if that," GM Walt Jocketty told reporters including MLB.com's Mark Sheldon.

Willingham, 32, hit a career-best 29 home runs for the Athletics in 2011.  A right-handed hitter, Willingham compiled a .246/.332/.477 batting line in 563 plate appearances.  He tallied 829 1/3 innings in left field, and also has experience in right field in 2009.  First base and designated hitter could be options as well.  Willingham's agent Matt Sosnick guessed in October that his client would sign a three-year deal. 


39 Responses to Rays Making Serious Run At Josh Willingham Leave a Reply

  1. domaug 4 years ago

    please let the Pirates be one of those teams

  2. tomymogo 4 years ago

    Come on Wren, I like him, at least inquire, and if you are able to trade some salary go after him

    • rundmc1981 4 years ago

      It’s a little maddening to see the Braves so disinterested in hometown boy, Josh Willingham (Florence, AL), possibly because of his subpar defense, but he brings power to the LF position. He should hit better than his 2011 .246 AVG indicates and in a more hitting-friendly ballpark, but I don’t know if it’s the injuries or presumed money that is the roadblock to having Wren at least take a flyer on him. 

      In my mind, he’s more of a NL player, and I could see him strongly considering ATL even if they don’t make the highest bid – but not if they’re not going to court him like he may want to be courted.

      • Gunner65 4 years ago

        If he hit 29 bombs playing half his games in that park, imagine what he’d do in the Red’s bandbox between Votto & Bruce

  3. NYBravosFan10 4 years ago

    ok, there is no bloody way that the Braves aren’t in on this. Power. Left fielder. Veteran. Knows the NL East. Been connected to us for a long time.

    • Not if they have to give up a pick for his status.

    • rundmc1981 4 years ago

      Honestly, there’s a way he’s not connected to us. He’s been available to us from WSH, but I really think ATL thinks he’s an injury risk despite his power. I can’t understand why we’re not even looking at him as an option, but maybe they feel like his defense isn’t good enough to justify power and possibly missing some time due to injuries. 

  4. EightMileCats 4 years ago

    Hopefully Detroit is in if the rumors of Young being traded turn out to be true

  5. 14 Rocks 4 years ago

    I wonder if the Braves were one of the 9 teams. 

  6. AmericanMovieFan 4 years ago

    The question is, will he get Carlos Pena money or Marlon Byrd money.

  7. Willingham is better than Cuddyer

  8. FS54 4 years ago

    Bet Nationals are not one of them. He is a good player but can be injured too often. He should stay in AL. Then he can probably play 162 games and hit more than 30 HRs. Good luck to him.

  9. not_brooks 4 years ago

    I’d love to see him back with the A’s.

    If only because of this:

    Outfielders on A’s 40 Man Roster: Ryan Sweeney, Jai Miller, Jermaine Mitchell, Michael Taylor

  10. Jim McGrath 4 years ago

    Why aren’t the Red Sox in on JWillingham? He seems like he would fit perfectly in RF and be a nice bit of protection for AGon. He’s got some good power numbers.

    • Philip Marlowe 4 years ago

      Protection for AGon? You mean Youkilis, Ellsbury, Pedroia, Crawford, Lowrie, Salty, and Ortiz just isn’t quite enough? 

      Lulz.

      • Jim McGrath 4 years ago

        Not sure if that’s a Cubs C or a Canadians C. None of those  players play RF. Chances are 50-50 Ortiz will find greener pastures and Youk may be traded for a starting pitcher. AGon and JWill might make a dynamic duo to remind Sox fans of Manny and Ortiz.

        • JunKim 4 years ago

          He is LF. He cannot handle RF, dude.. Google reference.

  11. Jim McGrath 4 years ago

    Why aren’t the Red Sox in on JWillingham? He seems like he would fit perfectly in RF and be a nice bit of protection for AGon. He’s got some good power numbers.

  12. I think he’d fit nicely between Votto

  13. I think he’d fit nicely between Votto

  14. Love when the App crashes..

    I’d love to see him hitting between Votto

  15. lefty177 4 years ago

    anybody else notice he had the highest HR totals of his career in 1 of the most pitcher-friendly parks in all of baseball? 

  16. RepOak 4 years ago

    81 games on artificial turf in Tampa?! On a bad Achilles?! Ouch! I can already see it coming..

    • Mamba22 4 years ago

      Wonder what money they are using ???? But Heyyy , us Rays Fans wouldnt mind a consistent bat

      • Yankees420 4 years ago

        Longoria and Zobrist aren’t consistent?  

        • Junior Barnes 4 years ago

          Well said, for a Yankee fan! Damon and Cotchmen too. Just not alot of power.

    • not_brooks 4 years ago

      With Upton, Jennings, Zobrist, Fuld and Joyce around, I doubt the Hammer would play much outfield for Tampa.

  17. 29 HR’s on Oakland…Who knows how many could come at Great American Smallpark

    • I was thinking the same thing…  Career Year if he signs with Cincy??

  18. tellrodt 4 years ago

    He’d probably be a 1B / DH / OF for Tampa Bay.  Joe Maddon likes to rotate guys.  I don’t think he’ll be playing on the turf that much, seeing that 1B is played on the dirt and the DH doesn’t ever have to run into the grass / turf.

  19. diesel2410 4 years ago

    Would be a great signing if he signed with Tampa.

  20. Junior Barnes 4 years ago

    Please not the Rays. Maybe if he could play RF, but that aint gonna happen. The only way he goes to the Rays is if they are cutting ties with Upton and moving Desmond to CF. Jenings an BJ have left and center covered just fine. This guy had 1 real good year hitting 29 HR’s last year in Oakland. He’s avergaing 16 HR abnd battng .262 lifetime. Unless he’s moving to RF or 1B no thanks, no thanks.

  21. WATKINSBOB 4 years ago

    the word went out 6 months ago ,josh did not want to renew with  A’S.. THATS one reason  they all lay back and think they can get him cheap..wait for the bidding….watkinsbob

  22. WATKINSBOB 4 years ago

    the word went out 6 months ago ,josh did not want to renew with  A’S.. THATS one reason  they all lay back and think they can get him cheap..wait for the bidding….watkinsbob

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