Best duos in Tampa Bay Rays history

Written by:
May 16, 2022
Schyler // Wikimedia Commons

Best duos in Tampa Bay Rays history

In Major League Baseball, it takes more than one skilled player to field a championship contender. It takes talent all over the field at a variety of positions, both in terms of pitchers and hitters. While having a star pitcher and a star hitter at the same time is no guarantee of success, it does put your team in a position to have the type of season that fans will talk about for generations.

While it’s not quite the same as the NBA, where one standout duo can take a team from the cellar to playoff contention, it’s not uncommon for an outstanding season from a pitcher and position player duo to add 20 wins or more, according to Baseball Reference’s wins above replacement player metric. The number is designed to illustrate the difference between a star player and the type of player that would be considered “replacement level”—that is, one who could be easily signed as a midseason free agent or called up from the minor leagues.

The following is a list of the top pitcher/position player duos in Tampa Bay Rays history. Using wins above replacement, Stacker compiled a list of the seasons in franchise history that had a pitcher and hitter with the most combined value. Note that, for the purpose of capturing and examining the game's "modern era", only seasons after 1969 were used for this list.

#10. 2019 Tampa Bay Rays
- Willy Adames: 3.9 WAR (#56 position player in 2019)
- Charlie Morton: 4.9 WAR (#16 pitcher in 2019)
- Total: 8.8 WAR

#9. 2008 Tampa Bay Rays
- Carlos Pena: 5.1 WAR (#25 position player in 2008)
- Scott Kazmir: 3.9 WAR (#37 pitcher in 2008)
- Total: 9 WAR

#8. 2013 Tampa Bay Rays
- Evan Longoria: 5.8 WAR (#17 position player in 2013)
- Alex Cobb: 3.8 WAR (#25 pitcher in 2013)
- Total: 9.6 WAR

#7. 2015 Tampa Bay Rays
- Kevin Kiermaier: 7.1 WAR (#6 position player in 2015)
- Chris Archer: 3.9 WAR (#21 pitcher in 2015)
- Total: 11 WAR

#6. 2018 Tampa Bay Rays
- Joey Wendle: 4.9 WAR (#22 position player in 2018)
- Blake Snell: 7.1 WAR (#5 pitcher in 2018)
- Total: 12 WAR

#5. 2009 Tampa Bay Rays
- Ben Zobrist: 8.6 WAR (#2 position player in 2009)
- Matt Garza: 3.6 WAR (#33 pitcher in 2009)
- Total: 12.2 WAR

#4. 2012 Tampa Bay Rays
- Ben Zobrist: 5.8 WAR (#14 position player in 2012)
- David Price: 6.6 WAR (#2 pitcher in 2012)
- Total: 12.4 WAR

#3. 2010 Tampa Bay Rays
- Evan Longoria: 8.2 WAR (#2 position player in 2010)
- David Price: 4.7 WAR (#17 pitcher in 2010)
- Total: 12.9 WAR

#2. 2007 Tampa Bay Devil Rays
- Carlos Pena: 7.2 WAR (#8 position player in 2007)
- Scott Kazmir: 5.8 WAR (#12 pitcher in 2007)
- Total: 13 WAR

#1. 2011 Tampa Bay Rays
- Ben Zobrist: 7.6 WAR (#7 position player in 2011)
- James Shields: 5.8 WAR (#10 pitcher in 2011)
- Total: 13.4 WAR

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