“Ozzie Smith With the Glove, Barry Bonds With the Bat”- Tampa Bay Rays Manager Feels the Same Way for Xander Bogaerts as Red Sox Star for Rays’ Youngster

Published 04/30/2022, 8:00 AM EDT
Sep 28, 2021; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Boston Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts (2) argues with umpire Mike Estabrook (83) after being called out on strikes against the Baltimore Orioles during the sixth inning at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Scott Taetsch-USA TODAY Sports

Boston Red Sox and the Tampa Bay Rays have not played their best baseball lately. The New York Yankees, on the other hand, have been in their best form this season. Recently, the Red Sox played against the Rays, Xander Bogaerts made a huge compliment to the Rays’ youngster Wander Franco.

Notably, the Red Sox lost the three-game series against the Tampa Bay Rays. And Bogaerts was in awe of Wander Franco’s gameplay against his team. He compared the 21-year-old to MLB legends Ozzie Smith and Barry Bonds.

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Just like Bogaerts, Franco also plays for the shortstop position for the Tampa Bay Rays. Having made his debut just a year back in the 2021 season, Franco has already made quite an impression in such a short time. Talking about Bogaerts, after hearing the compliments for his star player, the Rays manager also heaped praise on the Red Sox shortstop.

Kevin Cash thinks Xander Bogaerts is a combination of Ozzie Smith and Manny Ramirez

Having played for close to ten years in Major League Baseball, Xander Bogaerts is one of the best shortstops in the league. After making his debut for the Boston Red Sox, Bogaerts has not played for any other MLB franchise. Earlier this month, the Tampa Bay Rays defeated the Red Sox in a three-game series.

Oct 11, 2021; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Red Sox center fielder Enrique Hernandez (5) celebrates with shortstop Xander Bogaerts (2) and right fielder Hunter Renfroe (10) after hitting a walk-off sacrifice fly against the Tampa Bay Rays to score pinch runner Danny Santana (not pictured) during the ninth inning during game four of the 2021 ALDS at Fenway Park. The Boston Red Sox won 6-5. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

While playing against the Rays, Bogaerts noticed some good gameplay from the Rays shortstop Wander Franco. He even complimented him as “Ozzie Smith with the glove and Barry Bonds with the bat.”

Reacting to this, the Rays manager Kevin Cash said that he feels the same way for Bogaerts. The Rays manager said when he comes to the plate it feels like Ozzie Smith and Manny Ramirez are playing as Bogaerts.

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“I feel the same way about Xander Bogaerts, to be honest with you,” said Kevin Cash. “I mean we have seen that guy. If such a talented player play against us. That’s how it feels when he is coming up to the plate, Ozzie Smith and Manny Ramirez. So I am sure Wander appreciates the compliment, I mean to be in the same bracket as those guys.”

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If Franco continues to play like this for the rest of his career, he might be one of the best shortstops in the league for sure. But it all depends on him. What do you think of his future? Do you agree with what Bogaerts said about him?

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Abhishek Kumar

557 articles

Abhishek Kumar is an MLB author at EssentiallySports. After completing his Master’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication, Abhishek has been working in the media industry since two years. Before joining EssentiallySports, he previously worked at APN News as a sub-editor, where he has written articles on sports and politics.

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