Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Friedman still relishes relationships formed with Rays

Andrew Friedman, center, talks with Rays third baseman Evan Longoria, right, and hitting coach Derek Shelton in his return to Tropicana Field.


Andrew Friedman, center, talks with Rays third baseman Evan Longoria, right, and hitting coach Derek Shelton in his return to Tropicana Field.

ST. PETERSBURG — Walking back into the Trop on Tuesday was understandably odd for Andrew Friedman, the architect of the Rays' transformation into contenders who now was just visiting with his new Dodgers team.

"It was strange," he said. "Just saying hello to people I walked by for 10-plus years of my life."

There were plenty of handshakes and hugs, questions from Tampa Bay media and a scoreboard tribute he surely would rather have done without given his attempts to downplay his return.

Friedman, who still talks regularly with some Rays personnel and watches "a decent amount" of their games, said there wasn't a singular accomplishment that he treasured most from his run as executive vice president that saw the Rays make the playoffs four times in six years.

"The things that are most special to me were the relationships throughout this building, the staff, the players," he said. "I derive so much satisfaction from what I do from the people that I work with. Obviously, very meaningful relationships were formed here over a long time through some great ups and some downs working together. And that's the thing that probably has the most lasting impact on me."

Coincidentally, the biggest transition in going from the small-market, low-budget Rays to the Dodgers and their $227 million-plus payroll in October 2014 has been finding the same level of comfort in the new relationships there, especially as he turned over a hefty amount of staff.

"Probably just the time it takes to create those relationships," he said. "I just naively expected it to happen immediately and because of how much I wanted that to happen, but it doesn't work that way."

In short, Friedman said he treasures what he did with the Rays and relishes the opportunity with the Dodgers.

"I definitely had a very good thing in Tampa Bay," he said, "but I'm excited and invigorated for this chapter of my life."

Friedman still relishes relationships formed with Rays 05/03/16 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 3, 2016 9:07pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays blow lead in ninth, lose in 10 to Rangers (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Rays manager Kevin Cash liked the way Alex Cobb was competing Friday night. He liked the way the hard contact made by the Rangers batters went away after the second or third inning. So as the game headed toward the ninth, there was no doubt in Cash's mind that sending Cobb back to the mound was …

    Rays starter Alex Cobb can hardly believe what just happened as he leaves the game in the ninth after allowing a leadoff double then a tying two-run homer to the Rangers’ Shin-Soo Choo.
  2. Rays journal: Steven Souza Jr. gets extra day off to let hip heal

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — RF Steven Souza Jr. ran in rightfield before batting practice under the watchful gaze of the Rays training staff and manager Kevin Cash. Afterward, Souza told Cash he could use one more day of rest before playing on the left hip he strained Wednesday in Oakland.

    Tampa Bay Rays second baseman Brad Miller (13) gets a hug from right fielder Steven Souza Jr. (20) after his solo home run in the fourth inning of the game between the Texas Rangers and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Friday, July 21, 2017.
  3. Rays vs. Rangers, 7:10 p.m. Saturday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Rangers

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: FS1; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

  4. Roger Mooney's takeaways from Friday's Rays-Rangers game

    The Heater

    Looks like LF Corey Dickerson is coming out of his funk at the plate — .186 average in past 16 games entering Friday. He had two hits Wednesday in Oakland and three hits Friday against the Rangers. Okay, one was an infield hit that bounced high in front of the plate, but the other was a long home run to …

  5. History shows Ole Miss upheaval tough to overcome


    After Mississippi football coach Hugh Freeze resigned Thursday, with the opener six weeks away, offensive line coach Matt Luke is being thrown into an interim head coaching position. He will try to save a season that already had been scarred by a self-imposed bowl ban for NCAA violations.

    After coach Jim Tressel resigned, Ohio State went 6-7, including a loss to Florida in the Gator Bowl, in 2011.