Friday, April 22, 2011

Sam Fuld Keeps Raking

Despite the Rays 6-4 loss on a Blue Jays' walk off homer tonight, Rays outfielder Sam Fuld kept hitting and was again the Rays most effective player.  He went 3-5, with two singles, a triple, three runs scored and two stolen bases.  Through 18 games this season, Fuld has recorded a slash line of .366/.395/.549 (avg/obp/slg), with one home run, eight RBI, 11 runs scored, and an AL-leading nine stolen bases.

Fuld has turned out to be the Rays biggest offseason addition so far in 2011.  For many people, he was an afterthought in the deal that sent Matt Garza to the Cubs for a few of Chicago's top prospects.  He made the Rays as a fourth outfielder, but gained his chance to start everyday after Manny Ramirez suddenly retired.  His gritty play, hot hitting and absurdly good defense have made him the new star of Tropicana Field.  Rays fans love him, have already pointed out how much better he has played than their old outfield star, Carl Crawford.

Being a Cubs fan and a graduate of Fuld's high school, it was always disappointing that he never got a chance to really succeed at Wrigley.  The Cubs always had a stockpile of highly paid (underachieving) outfielders.  In the short time that Fuld spent in Chicago, he hit pretty well and became a cult hero to Cubs fans by running into the ivy-covered, brick outfield wall at full speed to make a catch.  While he never got a legitimate shot for the Cubs, hopefully he can continue to succeed in Tampa.

Here are a couple articles on Fuld:

MLB Twitter Trends: The Legend of Sam Fuld, Tampa Bay's New Hero

The Legend of Sam Fuld

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