St. Petersburg, FL (SportsNetwork.com) – The Tampa Bay Rays have exercised
their 2015 club option on utilityman Ben Zobrist.
A mainstay of the club over the years, Zobrist will enter his 10th season in a
Rays uniform, becoming the only player in the franchise’s relatively short
history to do so. He will earn $7.5 million in the final season of a five-year
extension that was signed in April 2010.
The two-time All-Star is the Rays’ leader in doubles (229) and walks (542) and
ranks second behind Carl Crawford in games played, hits, runs and triples.
“Ben has been integral to the success that the Rays have enjoyed throughout
his career here,” said Rays vice president of baseball operations Chaim Bloom.
“His skill and versatility on the field, combined with his character and
selflessness, make him the ultimate team player. We are excited to continue
forward with him.”
Zobrist, the 2014 Don Zimmer Most Valuable Player recipient, given to the
Rays’ top contributor on the field, hit .272 with 10 home runs and 52 RBI over
146 games this past season.
Over his first nine seasons in Tampa, he owns a .264 career average with 114
homers, 511 RBI and 565 runs scored while playing numerous positions in both
the infield and outfield.
The 33-year-old is the first player since 1914 to play 200 games at second
base, shortstop and right field.