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UPDATE: Hank Blalock signs minor league deal with Rays

Mar 8, 2010, 9:43 PM EDT

UPDATE: Blalock has agreed to a minor league contract with the Rays, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com. He’ll receive a $925,000 base salary if he makes the team plus $350,000 in performance incentives.
Monday 11:58am: MLB.com’s Bill Chastain reports that “the Rays appear to be close to signing Hank Blalock to a minor-league deal.” And manager Joe Maddon all but confirmed the move when asked this morning, saying: “I anticipate that it’s going to get done relatively soon.”
Blalock smacked 25 homers in 462 at-bats last season, but hit a career-worst .234 with a putrid .277 on-base percentage and 108/26 K/BB ratio in the process, missed most of 2007 and 2008 with injuries, and may not be able to play third base any longer thanks to shoulder problems. In other words, a minor-league pact sounds about right.
He’ll likely compete with Pat Burrell for playing time at designated hitter, with a strict lefty-righty platoon being an option. Blalock reportedly also had a similar offer from the Marlins, but the Rays probably represent a better chance for significant action as well as a better team.

  1. TF in Tampa - Mar 8, 2010 at 12:18 PM

    Its nice to know that you, Aaron, and Hank as well, have some confidence in the Rays, or at least more so than in the Feesh.
    I still do not see the Rays finishing any higher than 3rd in their AL division. My Yanks are still the team to beat and the Red Sux are always a tough grind, which makes for good B-ball.
    But watch and remember, it so often comes down to who has the least [or best] timely injuries, especially when it relates to the pitching category.

  2. Old Gator - Mar 8, 2010 at 1:54 PM

    I have a funny feeling that the Rays got themselves a good deal in Blalock. In the old days – like, two years ago – he would’ve been exactly the sort of guy the Feesh would’ve snatched off the scrapheap who would have paid dividends for them. But then Scrooge McLoria got divorced (the more things change, etc.) and they let Lenny Harris walk, and you just knew the falcon’s gyre was widening.
    .
    Of course, the difference is, Blalock could say we got sunshine, got fresh air – but at the Tropicana Dump he’s going to be reading Archie comics to try to fend off depression, and looking over his shoulder from time to time to see if that stupid min-blimp is diving on him again.
    .
    Is Prozac considered a PED?

  3. TF in Tampa - Mar 8, 2010 at 4:07 PM

    Hey ‘Superstar’, again your notoriety or should I say fame has followed you and landed you in the headlines, “Meeting Old Gator”. I am not worthy..[bow, bow, bow] I am not worthy, etc…[bow again]. You sure know how to impress the main man CC. I believe that I have come to know you a little better than most, since we ramble on quite a bit here, and according to CC’s post, you are who you say you are! Thats good to know.
    Well, you seem to know more about Blalock than I do, I see that he can knock the ball out of the park [25 zingers last yr], but his SO percentage vs AB is too high, he must love the glory trot. Only time will tell, we’ll find out soon enough if the Rays scored a winner in him.
    I’ll scroll over to Craigs post now. Time to be another one of your fans and post a thread over at your personal heading, lets see if I can do you some Justice.

  4. Nasty Boy - Mar 9, 2010 at 12:44 AM

    I’m not sure on this one. Blalock’s avg. at Texas is sign that all is not well. Gary Mathews pounded the ball there, good enough to suck the Angels into giving him an outrages contract, and he quickly took a crap on them. I wish Hank well , but I’d be a little suspect. I guess you can’t get hurt too badly on a minor league contract . Good luck Hank.

  5. Old Gator - Mar 9, 2010 at 12:56 AM

    Blalock was injured multiple times over the past five years. Somewhere back in mid-February I posted his stats in Tejas and speculated on how he might work or not work on the Feesh. That’s moot now. My guess is that, in addition to however injuries may directly constrain your mobility and flexibility, when you know you can’t run well anymore, you swing a lot harder and hope the ball lands far enough away that you won’t have to test your ligaments, tendons and surgical pins too hard. That batting strategy probably won’t help your average much but it might well pad your power numbers. If he stays healthy and takes care of himself, he should do OK in a limited role at TB, even considering how depressing that dump is to play in. On the road, he will get to see sunshine once in awhile.
    .
    I have some nitrous oxide in a small bottle. At some point this season I’ll bring it along and we can endure a game in the Tomb. Tell you what: let’s figure out how to connect and pledge to exchange Citrus Series visits – assuming, of course, that between frosts and cankers there’s any goddamned citrus left anymore.

  6. TF in Tampa - Mar 9, 2010 at 11:22 AM

    I hope that what your offering in that little bottle of yours is the legitimate real thing, I don’t want to end up being one of Craig’s front page blog posts,
    ‘GATOR SPIKES TF in TAMPA, BOTH LAUGH THEMSELVFS TO JAIL’
    Back in the late 60’s early 70’s, instead of an alcoholic ‘Micky’, my so called friends, the practical jokers, used to slip a hit of acid in your beer, then sit back and laugh at you for the next 8-10 hours, not funny if your on the receiving end.
    But yes, lets plan to connect soon.

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