How Rays, Giants should upgrade

Some names stand out to ease losses of Longoria and Sandoval

Updated: May 4, 2012, 12:33 PM ET
By Dave Cameron | FanGraphs
Evan LongoriaKim Klement/US PresswireWith Longoria shelved by injury, the Rays should upgrade at catcher to offset the loss.

When Ryan Zimmerman went on the disabled list last week, the Washington Nationals didn't call up a third baseman to replace him on the roster. Instead, they called up super prospect Bryce Harper and installed him in the outfield. The Nationals knew they didn't have any legitimate alternatives to replace Zimmerman and keep their offense afloat, so they did the next-best thing -- they promoted their best hitting prospect to inject some life into their offense. Harper has been nothing short of a revelation for the Nationals, and his strong start suggests that he'll remain a part of the roster even after Zimmerman returns.

The Nationals didn't replace Zimmerman; they offset his loss. And two other franchises -- Tampa Bay and San Francisco -- should take a page out of Washington's playbook and make similar acquisitions to offset recent injuries.


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