Rays Notes: Davis, Niemann, Pitching

With so many teams now in Florida for Spring Training, let's check on one of the teams that calls the Sunshine State home year-round…

  • Wade Davis wasn't pleased about the possibility of pitching out of the bullpen this season, reports Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.  "I don't see any reason for me to be in the bullpen," Davis said.  "I understand they've got to do certain things, but we'll see. … I definitely want to be a starter and stay a starter forever. And that'll be my mentality."  Davis and Jeff Niemann will be battling to be Tampa Bay's fifth starter, with the other becoming a reliever.  As Topkin points out, there's little Davis could do if he is assigned a relief gig, as "he wouldn't have much leverage to force a trade."
  • ESPN's Buster Olney hears from some scouts that Davis is "much better suited" as a relief pitcher and "could actually be pretty good at that job."
  • Between Davis, Niemann and prospects Alex Torres and Alex Cobb, the Rays like their pitching depth and want to hang onto it, executive VP of baseball operations Andrew Friedman told media (including Topkin) on Monday.  Friedman did say that the Rays would "be aggressive in trying to improve [the] roster."
  • Niemann didn't seem too upset over losing his arbitration case to the Rays earlier this month.  “I considered it a win-win situation going in,” Niemann told Roger Mooney of TBO.com. “Certain circumstances got us to that point. We did it, went through it, got the experience. Now I’m ready to go out there and play."


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