Around this time last week, the legal tampering period began in the NFL Free Agency frenzy. The first wave of free agency was not kind to the Ravens as Terrell Suggs, C.J. Mosley, John Brown, and Za’Darius Smith all found new homes in a very short period of time.
Eric DeCosta and company responded by signing the top free agent on the market in former Seahawks safety Earl Thomas. Thomas will fill the free safety role vacated when the Ravens chose to part ways with veteran safety Eric Weddle two weeks ago. DeCosta also brought in former New Orleans Saints running back Mark Ingram to help bolster what promises to be a dominant rushing attack. Special teams ace Justin Bethel rounded out the Ravens additions so far.
With the NFL Draft quickly approaching on April 25, the Ravens have some holes to fill as they head into the draft process. Here are some targets the Ravens should consider to bolster their roster in free agency before the draft arrives in a month or so.
Before the Orioles took the field against the Yankees on Sunday from Ed Smith Stadium, eight players were either optioned to Triple-A Norfolk or assigned to minor league camp.
Outfielders Austin Hays and Anthony Santander both hit well above .300 in Spring Training, each receiving at least 33 at-bats. They were two names muttered by media and fans alike when talking about the young talent who could travel north when camp concludes.
Santander, who has a rocket of an arm, hit .198 over 101 big league at-bats before being optioned in May of last year. Hays was a September call-up in 2017 and received 60 at-bats. Much of his 2018 season was spent in the trainer’s room dealing with a stress fracture in his right ankle that required surgery.
Hays was a surprising cut considering his service time clock already started. Both his bat and his glove dominated the spring training highlight reel. There’s a number of factors behind the transactions due to how crowded the Orioles outfield is. Even though Hays and Santander won’t crack the Opening Day lineup, some more time on the farm will only help their development.
On the same day that long-time special teams coordinator and assistant head coach Jerry Rosburg announced his retirement following 11 seasons with the Ravens, the team agreed to terms with special teams standout Justin Bethel on a two-year deal.