Those sneaky Rays are up to something again, coming to terms with a one year 3 million dollar deal for the 29 year old right hander. 2020 was spent for the first time outside of St. Louis for Wacha, as he signed another one year 3 million dollar deal with the New York Mets. Those 34 innings he threw for New York, were not exactly what they hoped they would get from Wacha, as he ended the season with a 6.62 ERA, 64 ERA+ and 1.56 WHIP and ranked in the bottom 16th percentile in avoiding Hard Hit percentage. The biggest hope for Wacha, is that he can return to close to how dominant he was during his first three seasons in the big leagues, highlighted by a 2015 season that saw him go 17-7 with a 3.38 ERA and earn to the date, his only All-Star appearance.
The Rays have a great way of finding talent, and molding players into serviceable and sometimes superstar level players. Players like Ji-Man Choi, Joey Wendle and Randy Arozarena have developed into great players for the Rays, when other teams have either given up on them, or traded them for not nearly enough as their current output. The Rays are also going to be in need of starting pitching with the potential of ace Blake Snell leaving via trade, and already losing star veteran Charlie Morton to the Braves. Wacha will likely slot in either the 5 spot in the rotation, or will be the long relief guy in their pen, and if he is the fifth guy, here is how to rotation would look likely in 2021 (assuming Blake Snell doesn’t get traded)
That is a rotation with a good amount of talent, and youth, with the oldest player being Wacha at 29. The Rays just keep making sneaky low attention pickups as they always do, that add to the depth of their team.