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#pounditTuesday, May 11, 2021

Report: Rays expected to keep Kiermaier, Archer despite fire sale

Chris Archer

The Tampa Bay Rays are expected to keep Kevin Kiermaier and Chris Archer despite recently removing familiar names from their roster.

Over the weekend, the Rays made moves that cleared a couple of the team’s higher-paid players from the roster. On Saturday, outfielder Corey Dickerson was designated for assignment following a trade for CJ Cron. The same night, starting pitcher Jake Odorizzi was traded to the Twins. Another domino fell on Tuesday with Steven Souza Jr. being traded to the Diamondbacks as part of a three-team deal.

Given the recent flurry of transactions, it would be understandable to wonder who will be on their way out of Tampa Bay next, with big players like Kiermaier and Archer being top targets. According to Marc Topkin of The Tampa Bay Times, both players are expected to remain with the Rays.

The Yankees and Red Sox have clearly separated themselves as the class of the American League East. That leaves the Rays apparently opting to rebuild and collect assets. Souza sympathizes with fans and encouraged them to be patient and have faith in the front office during what will likely be a difficult period.

The Rays finished last season third place in the AL East at 80-82. Given the recent transactions, it would be tough to forecast the Rays finishing in a similar position in 2018. That will be tough for Kiermaier to swallow, as he’s already grumbled about the team’s recent moves.

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