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List of former Tampa Bay Rays are still led by David Price, James Shields

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Evidently, the Milwaukee Brewers are weary of Matt Garza.

The Brewers told Garza to go home for the birth of his twins, and well, just to stay there. Evidently, Garza didn’t react well to being pulled from the rotation and didn’t want to pitch out of the bullpen. With $25 million due in his contract, odds are, he’ll be back.

That caused a little wonder, however. Just how are the old guys for the Tampa Bay Rays doing? Are the guys you used to cheer for still playing well.

Turns out, some of them are. Some of them, not so much.

Let’s start with pitching.

David Price, for instance, will get some votes for Cy Young. He’s 16-5 with a 2.42 ERA. James Shields is 12-6 with a 3.18. Scott Kazmir has a 3.06 ERA, but only a 2-5 record to show for it.

Who else? Jeremy Hellickson, once rookie of the year, is 9-9 in Arizona with a 4.78 ERA. But both Wade Davis and J.P. Howell are pitching well out of the bullpen. Davis is 7-1 with a 0.89 ERA while Howell is 6-1 with a 1.51.

Closer Ferndando Rodney has had a tough year. After leading the American League with 48 saves last season, he has only 16 in Seattle and Chicago this year.

And the position players? Ben Zobrist is hitting .284. Wil Myers has played in only 45 games and is hitting .263. Sean Rodriguez is hitting .248 for the Pirates. Sam Fuld has had a tough time, hitting .202 for the A’s, and Matt Joyce is hitting only .179 for Anaheim.

Yunel Escobar is hitting .318 for Washington. Carl Crawford is hitting .264 for the Dodgers, but has played in only 56 games. Melvin Upton is hitting .238 for San Diego. Jonny Gomes, who just signed with Kansas City, is hitting only  .221.

The Rays have been through some catchers. Stephen Vogt is hitting .271 for Oakland, Ryan Hannigan is hitting .254 for the Red Sox, Chris Giminez is at .239 for the Rangers and Jose Lobotan is at .207 for Washington.

So who would you like to see back? Well, Price and Shields could still start here. Zobrist was always a comforting sight in the lineup. And Davis would fit nicely into the bullpen.

Not that the Rays need any help, of course.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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