As we all know by now rookie Matt Moore, making just his second big league start yesterday, shut down the Rangers with seven shutout innings in game one of the ALDS. But if Joe Maddon had his way, Moore would have never started the game.

According to Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports, Maddon and Andrew Friedman were divided on who to start in game one, and it was Friedman that championed for Moore…

Joe Maddon walked in late to a meeting. The rest of the Tampa Bay Rays ‘ brain trust – general manager Andrew Friedman, scouts and coaches – were already discussing who to start in Game 1 of the American League Division Series…One bloc wanted to start Matt Moore…The other group preferred Wade Davis…Davis started and won a potential elimination game last season against the Texas Rangers, the Rays’ foes again this year. He does not throw nearly as hard as Moore. Davis’ career high in strikeouts is 10, and he has gone at least five scoreless innings in only three of his 64 major league starts…Friedman wanted Moore…Maddon wanted Davis.

Maddon does say that he was on board with Moore by the end of the meeting. And obviously starting Moore was the right decision. But we find this particularly interesting because if you told us the two sides were in disagreement, we would have guessed it was Maddon that wanted Moore and Friedman was pulling for Davis.

After all, it is Maddon that likes to take chances and isn’t afraid to use kids in high pressure situations (remember David Price in the 2008 playoffs?). And it is Friedman that believes in being patient with prospects (Desmond Jennings did have nearly 1,000 triple-A at bats).




  1. Sarah says:

    This is very interesting, and Friedman's willingness to start Moore here may foreshadow a willingness to bring him up next spring, arb clock be damned. I mean, if you are determined to start him in the minors next year would you provide him with a national showcase to prove just how major league ready he is?

  2. RTL says:

    As aggressive as Maddon can be, starting a pitcher with one ML start is "crazy" and if Moore was shelled, he could never live it down. He might have agreed from the get go, but wanted to make sure management would 100% back him. Also, the front office didn't keep Hellboy down last spring, trading away Garza to make room, so the whole arb clock thing isn't always applicable.

  3. Don says:

    Good indication of who REALLY makes the important player decisions on the Rays....

  4. Dave L says:

    This whole tale could be a bone tossed to Wade and Maddon being the good cop. Then again you have Hickey on the radio intimating it would be Jeff next thing you know he's not even on the roster

  5. phil says:

    This means Shields will be traded in the offseason for some bats ...Which will also save some money ...

    • Sublime says:

      The deeper this team goes into the season, I'm not so sure anymore that Shields will be traded, especially with Price being so-so right now. Shields is The defacto #1 and he's pitching like it, not sure if they're going to give him up for bats that are going to start their Rays career in Durham.

    • MJ says:

      I don't think so

    • Mike says:

      That was probably already going to happen to make room for Cobb. I doubt Moore will be in the rotation at the beginning of the season, especially if he pitches again in the post season. I would bet they keep him down just to limit his innings to a reasonable increase.

      But for right now, lets just be happy we have Shields and hope he dominates tonight like he has all year. Go Rays!

  6. Mike says:

    How many more innings does Moore have this year? Can he give us one more start if we make it to the ALCS? If we are playing Detroit it would be pretty nice to see if Moore can do it one more time.

    • Demetrios says:

      If we make it to the ALCS, Game 4 would be a perfect slot for Moore, assuming we are not 0-3 and it's an elimination game.

  7. Big Meech says:

    Interesting stuff to hear. I bet we keep shields, and hope we start Moore some more this post season.

  8. werD says:

    Rays are done trading. their farm system is so deep, they're all set to let Type A Free Agents decline their offer, and then take the draft picks.

    The Days of Trader Rays are coming to a close. maybe one or two small ones this offseason, but nothing like the ones we've seen in the past...

  9. Nana says:

    If we want to keep hold of our good, if not great, players GO TO THE GAMES!! Bring your friends TO THE GAMES!! Otherwise, don't complain, because it is YOUR fault, and if we lose our RAYS, it will be your fault.


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