USATSI_8154997_154511044_lowresThe biggest news in the Raysiverse yesterday is what is going on with some former Rays, or more specifically, the former GM and manager.

It should be no surprise to most Rays fans, but Andrew Friedman has been very busy early on with the Dodgers. He was busy with the Rays and that was with the constraints of a limited payroll. Friedman with lots of good players and a lot of payroll flexibility is like a kid alone in a toy store on a sugar high.

Just in the last 24 hours, the Dodgers traded Matt Kemp to the Padres, acquired Howie Kendrick from the Angels, made a 7-player trade with the Marlins, signed Brandon McCarthy, and appears to be on the verge of trading for Jimmy Rollins.

Meanwhile, Joe Maddon and the Cubs signed Jon Lester to a deal that could be worth as much as $170 million. Lester will be 31 next year. But that is OK, because Maddon likes “players who shoot things.


  • A Rays minor league catcher could be the first pick of the Rule 5 draft. Of course, that would be contingent on him staying with the new team in the majors all year. But it is very interesting considering the Rays could really use a backup catcher right about now and may be on the verge of losing a catcher to another team. []
  • The Cubs are the Bizarro Rays. They have built a farm system loaded with position players and are now spending money on old starting pitchers. [BI Sports]
  • Tampa mayor Bob Buckhorn says there are four potential sites for a new Rays stadium in Hillborough. The Westshore area is not one of them. [MyFoxTampaBay]
  • Field of Schemes calls Stuart Sternberg’s comments about another owner moving the team a “non-threat threat.” [Field of Schemes]
  • Not really sure the point of this story is at Yes, new stadiums have their best attendance season in the first year. And yes, percentage of seats sold is not going to be great in stadiums with more than 40,000 seats. Stuart Sternberg has made it clear that any new Rays stadium will have a “max” of 35,000 seats and probably more like 30,000. The proposal in 2007 was for a waterfront park with 34,000 seats. None of that is evidence for or against a potential attendance increase if the Rays move to Tampa. [WTSP]




  1. Gus says:

    Friedman at the Owners Meetings with an unlimited budget is like the reality show where the Amish teenagers are released into "mainstream America". 4 weeks in, Friedman is the Amish kid who hasn't slept in a week with his pupils as wide as saucers, wondering the streets of the lower east side, 20 pounds lighter than when he left Lancaster, PA.

    A Rollins-Hendrick duo up the middle will be different for him, that is for sure. But Carl Crawford has survivied the initial purge. But this will test my theory that the budget limitations of TB in many cases saved Friedman from his worst impulses (and when he was able to spend money, he spent it poorly).

  2. Woodrow744 says:

    I am a big Stu Sternberg fan. He essentially rescued this franchise from a terrible owner and put forth a tremendous amount of effort to turn the Rays into a successful business. Note I didn't say team - business, because that's where
    he comes from - the business world. He has put money into the Trop, which most fans find accommodating, even if the New York and Boston media despise it. All in all, an excellent to remarkable job.
    But, I for one, grow tired of hearing him make these threats, some veiled and some not, about attendance and the possibility of selling/moving the team. Stu, you've cried "Wolf" one too many times for me. After hemorrhaging three stars in 4 months (Price, Friedman, and Maddon - and I DEFINITELY think they were the true stars in the organization), we had better come up with a plan other than backup catcher, because the AL East cannot wait to put us back in the cellar.
    Sell us or own us, but get on with it.

  3. Jim says:

    So Stu could have easily looked at the Marlins and figured out that baseball wasn't going to be a big draw in Florida BEFORE he bought the team, even with a successful team in a bad ballpark.

    Now Stu can see that building a brand new stadium in Florida won't guarantee squat with attendance either if the team isn't great.

    Will on the field success(???) and a new park draw fans? Don't be stunned if the answer is no. Will the Rays in a new stadium get out of the bottom 1/4th in attendance? NO. Will we still be paraded around on ESPN when 9K show up on a Tuesday night to see the Jays play after the new wears off the new stadium? ABSOLUTELY!!! But now there won't be any "the Trop", "bad location", "old st pete" to use as a scapegoat.

    Cork, That's the point of the article. But hey, MLB, Stu and downtown Tampa will be deaf to the noise because it's a new toy!!!!

  4. Boxauthor says:

    Did anyone else see this? Peter Gammons on the current ace status of the AL East — paragraph #5.

  5. edward williams says:

    once again this winter meetings was a yawner for the rays, I really hope they do something to help make this team better, I don't think I would mess with the infield, or pitching staff, but they do need a dh, and some help in the outfield , oh and a back up catcher, all though I do like the young guy they had last year , castelly ? sorry can't seem to remember how to spell his last name. I really don't think that there is much to do, I forgot they have to get some speed, I know I said that this winter meeting was a yawner, but every winter meeting for the rays is, they usually do their work after, anyway god bless and merry Christmas to all.


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