David Price Carries More Weight After Tampa Bay Rays Traded James Shields
David Price carries the additional weight of expectations going into 2013 for a Tampa Bay Rays squad that has descended one place in their division in each of the past three years. Not only does he follow up a tough act in winning the 2012 AL Cy Young Award, but knows the staff he leads must pull additional slack due to the offseason trade of fellow star pitcher James Shields and Wade Davis to the Kansas City Royals.
“We’re definitely missing a good ballplayer and a better person, but the guys we have to fill his shoes are going to be able to do it just fine,” Price told Sports Illustrated. “We’re just going to increase our workload, by 30 or 40 innings total. If we each can just do five, 10, 15 more innings than last year, we’ll do just fine.”
The Rays still boast a wealth of young talent in their pitching staff with Matt Moore and 2011 AL Rookie of the Year Jeremy Hellickson returning to a squad that led Major League Baseball in ERA last season.
Tampa opens the season hosting the Baltimore Orioles on April 2 at 3:10 p.m. ET as the Rays attempt to climb to the top of the American League East after finishing third in 2012, second in 2011 and and first in 2010. Price is set to start for the Rays against Jason Hammel for the O’s.