There are only seven games left in the regular season. And whether the Rays play in the postseason or not, we are now just a little over one month away from the off-season and all the renewed rumors of which players the Rays will trade.
Last winter, the Rays trade Matt Garza for half of the Cubs farm system. But with speculation swirling that James Shields will be the next to go, Andrew Friedman sounds like a guy that would prefer to hold on to Shields, and the rest of the starting pitchers…
“Starting pitching depth is very fleeting,” Friedman said. “While we have it right now, we can’t wake up one day with [only] three or four starters, where we have to go looking on the market…We’re absolutely doomed if that happens. We’re certainly not going into the winter saying we have too much starting pitching.”
Of course, this doesn’t mean the Rays won’t trade Shields or another starting pitcher. And if a team makes another Cubs-like offer, Friedman will make the deal.
In the trade game, this is standard operating procedure for the Rays. They will never admit that they need or even want to trade a particular player. And they will always be willing to hold on to a player unless their price is met. By taking these stances publicly, it tells other teams that they must make a strong offer or it will be rejected.