Rays Sign Delmon Young | The Process Report

Rays Sign Delmon Young

The Rays have signed Delmon Young to a minor-league deal, according to Ken Rosenthal. He will report to Double-A Montgomery for the time being.

Young, soon to turn 28, was the club’s first-round pick in 2003. He debuted in 2006 and played in each regular-season game in 2007. A nice feat, albeit one tarnished by a confrontation with Joe Maddon on the season’s penultimate day. Young, annoyed with Maddon’s decision to pull him for not hustling, accused the manager of singling him out. Shortly after the season the Rays traded Young and others to Minnesota for a package headed by Matt Garza and Jason Bartlett. Garza and Bartlett helped the Rays reach the World Series the next season, while Young spent parts of four seasons in Minnesota before being flipped to the Tigers. He signed with the Phillies this past offseason and played in 80 games with the club before being released last week.

Despite his age, Young is not a good athlete. At the plate he likes to swing the bat and expands his zone too readily, resulting in plenty o empty swings and early-in-the-count outs. His offensive production in recent years is unacceptable from a poor corner outfielder slash designated hitter, and the saving grace is a .302/.340/.455 line against left-handed pitching. Ostensibly the Rays view Young as the short-side of a DH platoon with Luke Scott or whomever.

Whatever reservations there are to be had about Young and his history, it’s important to remember the people who have to work with him—namely Maddon and the coaching staff—have seemingly signed off on the decision. That doesn’t mean it’s all fresh fruit and warm puppy dogs or anything. Just that Young comes cheap and with little risk. There is no long-term obligation here, and no incentive on his part to act up. He’s no longer a top prospect, nor a particularly attractive ballplayer. Tampa Bay, as fitting as it may seem, could be his final big-league stop if this goes poorly.



One Comment

  1. Chris Wise wrote:

    Trivial edit: … and played in each regular-season game in 2007.

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