All signs pointed to the Tampa Bay Rays trading starting pitcher David Price prior to Thursday’s MLB trade deadline. Even though the team could keep him under control for at least one more season, it seemed in the best interest of the organization to strike a deal if the right offer came along. At this point, it appears Tampa Bay has heard the offers and no longer has an interest in trading Price.
Rays manager Joe Maddon spoke with John Feinstein of CBS Sports Radio this morning about how the organization is leaning more towards keeping Price, especially since they are creating movement in the AL East standings.
“As of right now, all the intel that I’m getting is that (he’s staying),” Maddon said on the John Feinstein Show. “We’ll see how that all plays out. Of course, you never know how things work out in the end. The eleventh hour is a very powerful hour, so you have to wait and see how that all plays. But for me personally and for us as a group, of course we’d love to keep David here. He’s a big part of our past and hopefully in the future, too.”
Prior to Wednesday’s start against the Milwaukee Brewers, Price is 5-0 with a 1.36 ERA in July. Overall, he has posted an 11-7 record with a 3.08 ERA and 183 strikeouts in 22 starts. Needless to say, these numbers are perfect leverage for the Rays, which might be the biggest problem. Tampa Bay is looking for an over-the-top offer that simply has not yet been discovered.
The Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals, two teams that are expected to contend down the stretch, are both very interested in acquiring Price. In fact, it has been reported that the Cardinals offered talented starting pitcher Shelby Miller and top prospect Oscar Taveras as part of a deal. If that is true and the Rays did not take it, it proves that Tampa Bay is reaching for the stars as far as an offer is concerned.
For that reason, it appears it makes more sense for the team to sit quietly at the deadline and see what happens in the offseason.