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rays-inquire-about-aybar | January | 2008 Articles

2008 Archives

Aybar Traded to Tampa Bay

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Update: According to Dave O'Brien, the Braves have traded Aybar and infield prospect Chase Fontaine to Tampa Bay for left-handed reliever Jeff Ridgway. I'll have a little more on this in a couple minutes. Marc Lancaster of Tampa Bay Online reported that the Tampa Bay Rays have asked about 24-year old utility infielder Willy Aybar. Aybar missed the 2007 season due to off-the-field problems. Aybar failed to report to a number of the team's games, earning an indefinite suspension from the team. Aybar said that he had gone to Boston to see his brother and try and sort out some of his drug and alcohol problems. He finally checked himself into a substance abuse rehab program. Aybar resumed playing in the Dominican Winter League, however after a strong start he has faded and his stats thus far are lackluster at best. With Tampa's top prospect Evan Longoria taking over the reigns at third this season, the Rays have been looking to add depth there. Aybar, who before the 2007 season was considered a lock to be Chipper Jones' primary backup, now could be the odd man out with a number of infielders battling for a bench spot. The Braves still may be in the market for a veteran reliever to add to the pen, however I'm not sure the Rays could part with anything there. If anything does happen, we'll probably see Aybar fetch a mid-level prospect or maybe another player with baggage (Juan Salas?).
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