All those precious roster spaces were needed to allow the team to add a host of new talent — and thereby protect it from the upcoming Rule 5 draft. Lefties Kyle Bird and Brock Burke, righty Ian Gibaut, and outfielders Joe McCarthy and Jesus Sanchez are all now on the 40-man.
It’ll certainly come as a surprise to some that Cron is on his way out of Tampa Bay. After all, the club was rewarded for nabbing him from the Angels last year. Cron drove the ball over the fence thirty times and produced a strong 122 wRC+ with his .253/.323/.493 slash.
Of course, the Rays rarely rest on their laurels — or indulge in excessive spending. While Cron isn’t slated to command an immense salary, and the Rays actually have ample payroll space with which to work, the earning power of players of his kind has been gutted in recent years. That’s not to say that another organization won’t see the value. It doesn’t hurt that Cron is still controllable for another campaign.