Gerry Hunsicker, the Rays Senior V. P. for baseball operations appeared yesterday on WFAN in New York City. Hunsicker, who has the most baseball experience in the Rays front office, was interviewed by Mike Francesa and Chris Russo of the #1 sports talk radio show in the country, Mike and The Mad Dog. He comes off as somebody that is still very skeptical of what the Rays can accomplish. Of the topics that were covered in the interview included:
- His working relationship with Andrew Friedman.
At the end of the day Andrew clearly makes the call. I am here kinda like the resource manual on the shelf.
- The acquisition of Akinori Iwamura and what he expects from him.
Defensively, he is as advertised…he hasn’t been particularly effective offensively but he has started to drive the ball a little bit lately…we really don’t know what we have, and we will have to let the season unfold to see.
- The potential of having the best lineup in baseball in three years.
it’s a long ways from the minor leagues to the major leagues, and I think we are in a situation where…we are still running a tryout at the major league level. We don’t have much certainty in our core group of players at the major league level…We really don’t know what we have.
- On signing a star free agent pitcher.
I believe that Stuart Sternberg, our owner will give us the resources when it makes sense…very few long term contracts, especially four and five year contracts, that you are giving for pitchers, work out. So until we get a little closer to the certainty that we need in our core group, to know what we really have, to go out and get one star pitcher…isn’t going to mean the difference between us being a contender and not being a contender. We really need some of these young pitchers to step up.
- On Joe Maddon.
He is a refreshing personality…One things I like about him a lot with our situation is that he has such a strong development background…This year I see a much more confident Maddon. A much more aggressive Maddon.