Sunday, February 18, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

No Tampa Bay Rays deals as MLB trade deadline passes

OAKLAND, Calif. — The signs had been increasing that the Rays were not expecting to make any trades by Tuesday's deadline for nonwaiver deals, so it was hardly a surprise when they didn't add to or subtract from their roster.

Even more predictable was their explanation why:

There weren't any deals that made sense, they are confident in what they have if the players do better and there is help on the way with the expected returns of injured Evan Longoria, Luke Scott and Jeff Niemann.

"We did a lot of different research, there were a lot of different inquiries about our guys," manager Joe Maddon said. "So there was a lot of back and forth, and our people back home spent a lot of time sifting through a lot of stuff.

"However nothing did happen, and I'm fine with that. Actually, I'm very happy about that. I felt from Day 1 this group of players is good enough to win our division and go back and win the World Series this time around, and I'm not going to depart from that feeling."

Injuries have severely disrupted their plans, however, especially the absence of Longoria. Their major league-worst .230 team average, and 53 games of three or fewer runs, made the need for offensive help seem obvious.

Hitters traded included Hunter Pence, Hanley Ramirez, Gaby Sanchez, Geovany Soto, Ichiro Suzuki and Shane Victorino. Others considered available included Stephen Drew, Carlos Lee, Alfonso Soriano and Justin Upton.

The Rays seemed to be looking primarily for upgrades at shortstop and catcher, where there were limited options. Players can still be traded if they clear waivers.

"Everybody wants to see us score more runs, but we can definitely score more runs with the guys we have," starter David Price said. "By no means am I upset we didn't make a move or anything like that."

The Rays do have a surplus of pitching, and starter James Shields was considered to be most in demand, including reports of some revived talk Tuesday with the Rangers before they acquired Ryan Dempster.

The Rays did beat the deadline on one acquisition: Executive vice president Andrew Friedman's wife gave birth to their second son Tuesday afternoon. It was the second straight deadline Friedman was in a hospital; last year he had an appendectomy.

OAKLAND, Calif. — The signs had been increasing that the Rays were not expecting to make any trades by Tuesday's deadline for nonwaiver deals, so it was hardly a surprise when they didn't add to or subtract from their roster.

Even more predictable was their explanation why:

There weren't any deals that made sense, they are confident in what they have if the players do better and there is help on the way with the expected returns of injured Evan Longoria, Luke Scott and Jeff Niemann.

"We did a lot of different research, there were a lot of different inquiries about our guys," manager Joe Maddon said. "So there was a lot of back and forth, and our people back home spent a lot of time sifting through a lot of stuff.

"However nothing did happen, and I'm fine with that. Actually, I'm very happy about that. I felt from Day 1 this group of players is good enough to win our division and go back and win the World Series this time around, and I'm not going to depart from that feeling."

Injuries have severely disrupted their plans, however, especially the absence of Longoria, and their major league-worst .230 team average, and 53 games with three or fewer runs, made the need for offensive help seemed obvious.

Hitters who were traded included Casey McGehee, Hunter Pence, Hanley Ramirez, Gaby Sanchez, Geovany Soto, Ichiro Suzuki and Shane Victorino. Others considered available included Stephen Drew, Carlos Lee, Alfonso Soriano and Justin Upton.

The Rays seemed to be looking primarily for upgrades at shortstop and catcher, where there were limited options. Players can still be traded if they clear waivers.

"Everybody wants to see us score more runs, but we can definitely score more runs with the guys we have," starter David Price said. "By no means am I upset we didn't make a move or anything like that."

The Rays do have a surplus of pitching, and starter James Shields was considered to be most in demand, including reports of some revived talk Tuesday with the Rangers before they acquired Ryan Dempster.

The Rays did beat the deadline on one acquisition: Executive vice president Andrew Friedman's wife gave birth to their second son Tuesday afternoon. It was the second straight deadline Friedman was in a hospital; last year he had an appendectomy.

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