Another night, another unlikely rumor: O-Dog
UPDATE, 10:05: The Rays have expressed interest in a lot of free agents, but this is very unlikely to lead to anything - not with the money Hudson is said to be looking for ($9-million in one report) and with the Rays remaining committed to some combination of Zobrist, Rodriguez and Brignac at second.
DEVELOPING: Remember a couple weeks ago when manager Joe Maddon said the Rays were looking for a little more depth at second base? The idea made some sense, given the relative lack of experience the Rays would have there in Sean Rodriguez and Reid Brignac if Ben Zobrist ended up in rightfield. Though there didn't seem to be any more to it, and in fact some further clarification that he was referring more to Triple-A depth, tonight there are some reports that the Rays are at least in on talks involving a potential starting second baseman - Orlando Hudson.
ESPN's Buster Olney tweeted about it earlier, writing: "Heard this: Rays in on Orlando Hudson talks; Ben Zobrist could play rightfield. All depends on the price on whether TB gets him." And Jim Bowden was talking about it Tuesday night on his XM Radio show.
Hudson, 32, has been connected most heavily with the Nationals, so it makes sense that the former Blue Jay would explore the chance to be in the AL East race instead. Hudson spent last season with the Dodgers, hitting .283 with 9 homers and 62 RBIs, winning his fourth Gold Glove and making his second All-Star team, while making a $3-million salary, plus around $5-million more in incentives.
Tuesday, he told nationals.com he was close to signing: "There is good progress going on every day. I will sign soon enough. You can put it on the Internet and on TV. I'm going to sign. I can't say exactly when. It will not be long. I can't say if it's with the Nationals, San Diego or Cleveland. I can't say with whom. Something is getting done."