March 29, 2018
Former West Chester University baseball All-American, Joey Wendle (WCU '12) learned earlier this week that he has made the Tampa Bay Rays' Opening Day roster and will be in uniform when the Rays kickoff their 2018 campaign at home against the Boston Red Sox on Thursday.
This marks the first year that Wendle has made an Opening Day roster coming out of spring training. He is in his first year with the Tampa Bay Rays, after being acquired in a trade with the Oakland Athletics on Dec. 12 during the Winter Meetings.
"Making the Opening Day roster for the Rays is an honor," Wendle said. "I can't wait to get out there and compete with this great group of guys."
The Avon Grove, Pa., native is in his seventh season of professional baseball and has spent parts of the last two summers with the Oakland A's as a late-season call-up. In 36 major league games, Wendle is hitting .266 with a .645 OPS. He has two doubles and two home runs in 109 career at bats.
This spring with the Rays, he hit .327 with .944 OPS in 19 games. He hit three doubles, three triples and one home run in 52 at bats in what was by far his most extensive work with the parent club in his seven spring campaigns.
In 641 minor league games, Wendle hit .288 with 58 home runs and 327 RBI. That level of consistency over a six-year period is why the Rays traded for Wendle and is what they are looking for in someone who will most likely platoon at second base with right-hand hitting Daniel Robertson.
Wendle graduated from West Chester University in 2012, after leading the Golden Rams to their first NCAA Division II national championship. He was an American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) first team All-America as well as a CoSIDA Academic All-America selection and Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year for all sports in 2012.
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