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Rays go after right-handed arms on the second day of the draft

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The Tampa Bay Rays are still a team built on pitching.

Take, for instance, Friday’s second round of the draft, when the Rays drafted nine arms, including eight right-handed pitchers.

The Rays, who started the draft with a third baseman and two outfielders, came back with right-handed pitcher Austin Franklin, right handed pitcher Easton McGee, right-handed pitcher Mikey York, right-handed pitcher Zack Trageton and right-handed pitcher J.D. Busfield. The Rays threw a change-up in the eighth round with left-handed Kenneth Rosenberg. They then came back to take Peter Bayer in the ninth round. In the 10th round, the Rays finished with Spencer Jones, a — what else? — right-handed pitcher.

“It was somewhat random by chance,” Rays’ scouting director Rob Metzler said of taking so many pitchers. “We were excited. We thought we added some pitchers with starter profiles with size. Good, clean arms. We are excited to put them in the system and see what happens.”

Franklin, McGee and Trageton are all high school players. The rest are from college baseball.

The draft concludes today.

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 [email protected]

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