This weekend we discussed the case for trading Jeremy Hellickson over James Shields. And now Jon Heyman of weighs in, saying Hellickson is drawing more interest early on…

Sources: Jeremy Hellickson, not James Shields, is the most popular rays trade target so far.

Obviously Shields is the better pitcher at this stage of his career. But considering their salaries, the Rays could get just as much, if not more for Hellickson on the trade market. Not only will teams offer more, in terms of prospects/players, if they aren’t adding much to their payroll, but Hellickson’s salary means more teams could get involved in the bidding, increasing demand.



  1. Dave L says:

    Of course teams want Helli.

    Not many pitchers put up numbers like he has in thier first 2 years.

    According to Corks projected payroll

    Sheilds 2013 - he will get $10.25mil and if we dont trade him by late summer he gets away and we get a nothing but a measly compensatory draft pick thats it.

    Helli 2013- he will make $460k and if we don't trade him by the end of next year he goes into arbitration and he gets a raise and we can still trade him anytime over the next 3 years.

    If we trade Sheilds we free up $10 mil with which to sign bats to play 1st base/DH and 2nd base/SS

    If we trade Helli we save nothing $$$-wise

    Really good pitchers like Maddux (as noted earlier) and Jim Palmer can defy BABIP thier whole careers. I am not saying he's in thier class but he has put up some very good early career numbers which match many great pitchers and it would be a shame to let him go while he's still so cheap to keep. His motion and mechanics are so clean and fluid and simple I think he can keep it up for years.

    Virtually every game he pitches he keeps the other team so off balance that they can never rally and we are always in it.

    Also Helli has been like a rock. That "injury' he had last year was was so bogus it was comical watching him try to tell the story they told him to. They just wanted to get the young guys some starts against the NL teams and limit his overall innings count for later in the year.

    • Nathan says:

      Preach it!

    • Greg says:

      I came on here to say the same thing only probably not as well. I love Shields, but keeping him doesn't make sense based on the way the Rays operate. We can't afford Shields beyond this year, so if we trade Hellickson, then we're losing both since Shields will be gone by summer (or worse, walks as a free agent at the end of the year).

    • Burn H. says:

      I agree with much of what you say, however after 2013 Sheilds doesn't just walk away... Andrew can pay him... James says he wants to stay in Tampa his whole career. Is it hard to believe that a player or players have seen what moving around every few years does to people? Is 15 mill going to buy that much MORE happiness than 12 or 10? Last year David excepted arbitration instead of fighting to get the extra couple of mill. Dam I make no where near that kind of money and I believe that it wouldn't make my life better than what I've made it to be now. You don't think that they have seen the rewards that came to CC with his big money? Be Happy don't worry...

  2. don says:

    Hell Why don't someone (Yankees, Rangers, PHilly) just make them a offer for both Shields & Helly Salary 11mil. a year....All we need (ask for) is a 1b,SS, CF, RF & catcher that can hit .250 or better, maybe 20hrs and under contract for peanuts any farm systems like that?...2 of the best pitchers in baseball for guys that hit .250.... sounds like the Rays


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