According to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports, the Tampa Bay Rays have agreed to sign outfielder Colby Rasmus to a one-year deal worth $5 million with the potential to earn incentives. Rasmus made headlines when he decided to bet on himself and accept the $15.8 million qualifying offer last season with the Houston Astros.
Rasmus, 30, was a former 28th-overall pick in the 2005 MLB Draft by the St. Louis Cardinals and broke into the league in 2009. Rasmus spent four seasons in St. Louis, before being dealt to the Toronto Blue Jays, and then signing with the Astros. Rasmus is a career .241 hitter, with 156 home runs and 467 runs batted in, but struggled this past season. Rasmus hit .206 with 15 home runs and 54 runs batted in during 107 games.
The Rays have been seeking some outfield help after the team dealt Brandon Guyer to the Indians at last season's trade deadline, and players like Mikie Mahtook, Richie Shaffer, Taylor Motter and Nick Franklin struggling to earn a full time role. Rasmus is an established starting outfielder who will likely hold down the left field spot in Tampa Bay and possibly spend some time in center field and designated hitter.
The Rays have had a quiet offseason so far, with Rasmus joining Wilson Ramos as the major signings of the offseason. The other major deal being the trade that sent Shaffer and Motter to Seattle in exchange for prospects. The Rays will likely be in the market for a bench bat and reliever after the Rasmus signing is completed.