[Update: 3:40pm] Now it looks like the Cubs and Padres have figured out how to move Peavy without a third team. Of course, the Rays could still try to work with the Padres on a deal for Giles, but this seems less likely now.
[9:56am]In case you missed it late last night, there is a rumor going around the winter meetings that the Rays may be getting involved in the Jake Peavy talks as a third team, with their eyes set on Brian Giles. There was talk last August that the Rays tried to land Giles but were blocked when the Red Sox put in a claim on the outfielder.
There is no mention of what the Padres would want from the Rays, but the holdup in a potential Cubs deal (for Peavy) is the lack of Cubs prospects that are close to the majors. The Padres were also looking for a major league shortstop from the Braves.
So we have to believe the Padres will be asking for something like Andy Sonnanstine. The Rays would probably rather a package include Jeff Niemann and Reid Brignac. Would Edwin Jackson get the deal done?
It seems unlikely that the Rays would be willing to part with a top pitcher for Giles (136 OPS+ in ’08) if the Rays could potentially land a free agent like Bobby Abreu (120 OPS+, 3 years younger) for the same price and without having to give up any prospects. The Padres could make it more enticing by eating some of the $9 million salary [Ed. note: As per the comments, Giles’ salary goes to $11 million in ’09 if he is traded]. Giles is in the last year of his deal.
Of course, all this means nothing if Giles is unwilling to be traded. Giles has full veto power as a 10-and-5 player (10 year veteran, 5 years with current team) and vetoed two deals (Red Sox and A’s) late last season.
Rays Rumored Third Team In Peavy Deal; Possibly Targeting Giles Again [Rays Index]
DEVIL DOGS WEBTOPIA…
- Jayson Stark says the Jeremy Hermida is exactly the type of player the Rays are looking for and wonders if a deal can be had for Jason Bartlett and either Andy Sonnanstine or Edwin Jackson…Considering what else is out there, this seems like too steep a price. [ESPN]
- Ryan Fagan of The Sporting News says Rocco Baldelli’s best option is to stick with the Rays…This is something we have long said. With the Rays, Rocco has a team that has been loyal when most would not and with the Rays, Rocco has a team that is very familiar with his condition and how best to utilize his talents at this point of his career. This is why the Rays will slow-play this hand, waiting out the market and Rocco. [The Sporting News]
- Dayn Perry says the Rays have “fewer needs to address [this offseason] than any other team in baseball.” We are not sure what attendance has to do with the Rays offseason plans but Perry brings it up out of leftfield at the end of the piece noting that teams usually show an attendance spike the year after a successful playoff run. [Fox Sports]
- Marc Lancaster reports that the Andrew Friedman is getting calls from players that would not normally be interested in signing with the Rays, noting that these players want to play with the Rays and are willing to accomodate the Rays (ie. switching positions) to make it happen. [Tampa Tribune]
- Marc Lancaster says the Rays greatest asset right now is their pitching depth and if a trade is made at the winter meetings it will probably involve a starting pitcher. [Tampa Tribune]
- Mets Fever says the Mets will have a hard time landing Edwin Jackson, noting the Metropolitans don’t have outfield depth. [Mets Fever]
- Rays Digest takes a look at pitching prospect Nick Barnese, who was #22 on our most recent Trade Value Index. RD compares Barnese’s makeup to Matt Garza and analyzes his pitch repertoire. If you are not into reading the usual rhetoric about the depth of pitching in the organization and just want to read about Barnese, skip to the 9th paragraph. [Rays Digest]
- MLB.com has their list of the top 50 prospects. The list is topped by David Price and includes four Rays farmhands in total. Tim Beckham (22), Wade Davis (31) and Jeremy Hellickson (39) are also on the list. [MLB]
- Rays Prospects is profiling the top hitting prospects in the organization. #13 is… [Rays Prospects]
- David Chalk continues to crank out his list of the top Devil Rays of all time. #18 is… [Bugs and Cranks]
- Bud Selig and Major League Baseball make too much money and are too concerned about the image of the sport to ever put a team in Las Vegas. Still, it is a bit disheartening to hear the mayor of Las Vegas salivating over the Rays. [St. Pete Times]
- Montgomery Biscuits GM Greg Rauch is at the winter meetings in Vegas to find a radio broadcaster. [Montgomery Advertiser]