The Rays hold a comfortable lead over the Red Sox, Yankees and Blue Jays in the AL East but have sputtered a bit in September. Perhaps adding one of the best pitching prospects in baseball and one of the most effective arms from the 2021 Minor League season will provide a necessary jolt.
Tampa Bay is calling up No. 20 overall prospect Shane Baz to make his Major League debut Monday with a start against Toronto at Tropicana Field. Baz becomes the sixth current or 2021 preseason Top 100 prospect to play for the Rays this season alongside Wander Franco, Vidal Bruján, Shane McClanahan, Luis Patiño and Josh Lowe.
There’s little doubt that the 22-year-old right-hander earned this promotion to The Show. He posted a 2.06 ERA with 113 strikeouts and 13 walks in 78 2/3 innings between Double-A Montgomery and Triple-A Durham prior to the news of his callup. He was even better at the higher level with a 1.76 ERA with 64 K’s in 10 starts (46 innings) after joining the Bulls on June 15. Though it may look like Baz was limited in Minor League innings, that was in part due to his participation with Team USA at the Olympics in Japan, where he helped the national team capture a silver medal.