The Rays were already staggering from the loss of two big bats in their line-up when Carl Crawford and Carlos Pena walked. The knock-out blow was self-inflicted when the Rays traded Matt Garza to the Cubs. The Rays also lost a key piece of their bullpen in the off-season when Dan Wheeler signed with the Red Sox. Wheeler appeared in 64 games for the Rays last season and finished with a 3.35 ERA.
Garza had a stellar 2010 season going 15-10 with a 3.91 ERA and expectorating over 57 gallons of saliva. He will be reunited with slugger Carlos Pena in Chicago and should be dominant in the NL. His former team…not so dominant. The Rays probably locked up 3rd place in the AL East with the move. Welcome to the bridge year, Tampa!