Brandon Lowe out for Season
Earlier today on Twitter, Marc Topkin wrote that according to Tampa Bay Rays manager Kevin Cash, Brandon Lowe was done for the season. Topkin then followed up and said that Lowe injured his left quad in a rehab game while running to first. Lowe had an MRI today, and team doctors confirmed the strain.
What Does This Mean for the Rays?
Lowe was batting .276 with 16 home runs and 49 RBI on the season. Lowe was playing very well for the Rays, and his presence was noticed. One thing the Rays have constantly struggled with is scoring with runners in scoring position (RISP). As a team, they were batting just .245. Lowe, on the other hand, batted .268 with RISP, and .282 with RISP with two outs.
With Lowe in the lineup, the Rays had a record of 42-34. Without Lowe, they had a record of 32-20. While there is no significant difference in the records with or without Lowe, they will have to rely on other players much more.
Luckily for the Rays, Lowe was not used in a lot of games either due to injury or rest so they have plenty of guys that can fill in for him. As mentioned before, Lowe was most crucial to the Rays at the plate than in the field.
Who Can Replace Lowe?
With Lowe gone the Rays will need someone to take his place at the plate. One of the first players that come to mind is Travis d’Arnaud. d’Arnaud is batting .296 with RISP and .250 overall. d’Arnaud can also play first base, which is one of the positions Lowe would occasionally play. d’Arnaud already plays catcher for the Rays, but he could see an increased role when Rays catcher Mike Zunino is behind the plate.
Jesus Aguilar could be another good option as well. With the Rays already having a few players who can play at first such as Ji-Man Choi, Aguilar can be used more at the plate versus the field. After all, this is what he was brought in to do at the deadline. Aguilar is currently batting .254 with RISP. While this is only as good as the rest of the Rays team, he brings the ability to go deep — which is huge in these situations.
So while this is defiantly a big blow for the Rays, it is not detrimental. Lowe was huge with RISP, but there are a few players that can fill in this role. Lowe’s injuries have only continued to slow him down. With Lowe being done for the year he should be able to now recover without setbacks. The Rays should be just fine moving forward and should still have a great shot at the postseason.
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