The Rays have inked free agent outfielder Dylan Cozens to a two-year minor league deal, according to reports from Matt Gelb and Josh Tolentino of The Athletic. Cozens’ eight-year track with the Phillies came to an abrupt end after he was released from the team last Friday. So far, the Rays have yet to publicly confirm his signing.
It’s been several months since the 25-year-old outfielder last appeared in the majors. Cozens logged just one game with the Phillies and was working through a second stint in Triple-A Lehigh Valley when he suffered a foot injury that cost him the remainder of his 2019 season. He underwent bone spur removal and big toe surgery in May and has not stepped on the field since. While it’s unlikely that the Rays will adjust his recovery timeline, Tolentino reports that there’s a “slim chance” he could be in game-ready condition by September. Either way, he should be fully healed in plenty of time to attend spring training in 2020.
Even when healthy, however, Cozens hasn’t found much success in the majors or minors so far. Following his MLB debut in 2018, he batted a meager .158/.273/.289 with three extra-base hits, two RBI, and a .562 OPS through his first 44 plate appearances. He performed little better in Triple-A this year, slashing .167/.333/.462 with nine extra bases, five stolen bases (in seven chances), and a .795 OPS in 99 PA.