This shouldn’t come as a surprise to many of you, although we are sure some of you will be disappointed. Joe Maddon spoke about David Price’s chances of winning the final spot in the rotation. And truth be told, we wonder if Jae Seo has a better shot.
“We’re looking at this from a developmental perspective, and with that, I think the changeup getting to become a better pitch is very big for us, the command of the fastball is very big for us, and then 130-some innings last year is very big for us,” Maddon said. “So we’re trying to consider a whole bunch of things with David, and we still consider him in the developmental process, whereas a lot of people, I think, see him as the finished product…But we don’t believe he’s far off. So if he doesn’t make it out of this camp as the fifth starter, we see that as being OK, because we have these other things that we think he needs to work on.”
The Rays have always preached that the development of the prospect outweighs the immediate needs of the team. While Maddon did admit that Price could change their minds with a strong spring, we can’t imagine a scenario in which he is that much better than the spring performances of Jeff Niemann and Jason Hammel. Their performances so far will certainly help make this decision easier.
So then the question becomes: How long will King David need to work in the minors before he is called up for good? Of course, a lot of that depends on how he progresses, but it may also depend on how well Niemann or Hammel are performing in the rotation. And if the one fails, we fully expect the other to get a shot before the Rays turn to Price.
At this point we still expect to see Price in the rotation at some point this season, but Rays fans may need realize…The Rays may not need Price in the rotation this season.
Price ready … but for what? [Rays Report]