Carlos Pena Returns To Tampa Bay

According to a report from Jon Heyman of, the Tampa Bay Rays have signed first baseman Carlos Pena to a one year contract worth $7.25 million, bringing the left handed slugger back after a year away in the National League.

When Pena signed a $10 million contract with the Chicago Cubs last year, I openly mocked Jim Hendry for the signing. Pena, at 32 years of age, was coming off a season in which he collected less than 100 hits and managed to strike out in more than 27% of his plate appearances. He redeemed himself with an excellent year in Chicago, getting on base almost 36% of the time, while slugging 58 extra base hits. However, the majority of his success came against right handed pitching, while he struggled against southpaws.

That’s an interesting point considering that the Rays had already signed left handed batter Luke Scott, whose splits are rather obvious as well. A $7.25 million contract is a lot for a Tampa Bay team that’s normally beyond budget conscious. However, the addition allows them to boast one of the better lineups in the league against right handed pitching.

Comments (16)

  1. Well, the Yanks and Sawx have slanted lefty for a few years- with all the short rightfield porches in the AL East (and with most pitchers being righthanded ), probably a good play.

  2. It’s an interesting strategy, if that’s what it is.

  3. YES! Somebody for the Jays to get out on the Rays.

  4. Pena is better hitting LHP then Lind, for 7.5 million provides more value then Linds 5 million.
    Blue Jays should have made him an offer, pena was worth 2 WAR, meanwhile Adam Lind was the second worst 1B in the enite league.
    Pena is also better defensively then Lind.

    • If the Jays were to spend 7.5 million on Pena, then they might as well have just gone the whole way and paid for Fielder. They believe Lind is a good hitter and that he can bounce back to be a good middle-of-the-lineup bat who’s signed to a good contract.

      There’s greater value to giving Lind another year than to get one year of Pena who has an inflated OPS due to his high number of walks.

      • There’s an awfully big difference between $7.5M and $150M, no?

        And what’s this inflated OPS due to walks theory you have?

    • But they still need to pay Lind regardless of whether they sign Pena or not.

  5. Go look at Lind he had one good season, He;s only worth 4.3 WAR his entire career, 3.7 of that was 2009.
    Lind fools people with power, that’s all he has, our work softball team could use him aswell.
    The Indians, brewers who have no one and the Rangers who had the worst first basemen might trade for him.
    Lind is garbage and dont believe the injury thing is why he sucked in 2011, because he sucked in 2006,2007,2008,2010 and now 2011,he had one good year.

    • True, I do expect Lind to suck this season too. Every year that he has sucked, there have been excuses.

  6. when lind looks good, he looks amazing. maybe he figures it out this year (age 28 season).

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