Friedman on getting a hitter: We set sights high
Executive VP Andrew Friedman said there were five hitters the Rays had targeted, and they were willing to be aggressive, but there weren't deals to be made, noting that none of the five ended up getting traded. "We set out sights high,'' Friedman said. "We had a specific group of players that we felt like would really impact us that we felt like we'd be aggressive to go out and get. We're fortunate with the depth that we have and the players we have at the major-league level and also at the Triple-A level we didn't need to fine-tune around the edges. It was set our sights high and see what lined up, but at the end of the day as you go through the list there wasn't a lot of activity on that front, a lot more of the periphery pieces. Those guys didn't end up getting moved.''
The two they were considered most interested in were taken off the market - Kansas City's David DeJesus got hurt, Philadelphia's Jayson Werth was no longer available when teammate Shane Victorino was hurt. They also had interest in Washington's Josh Willingham. Other rumored possibilities included Washington's Adam Dunn and Baltimore's Luke Scott.
Asked if they were close to a deal, Friedman replied: "It's hard to say. We felt at different points over the last 2-3 days that we had real momentum, or even going back a couple weeks, that we had real momentum on a deal that we thought had a real chance. For the most part, extenuating circumstances with other groups, things didn't pan out.''
Further, he said with their sights high "the odds are unlikely of lining up on a deal in the first place" and they went through different options, including multi-team trades, but nothing lined up.
The Rays will continue to monitor the market in August for waiver deals, though Friedman said it would be unlikely for that to happen.