PORT CHARLOTTE — Anyone can clearly see LHP David Price has a bright future. And now Price will be seeing more clearly after offseason Lasik surgery.
With vision so bad he has needed major correction since he was 8, Price was tired of the hassles of taking out his contacts as well as the discomfort caused by dust, wind and dry air. "It was just annoying," he said.
Price, 24, acknowledged he had some concerns about the procedure, done in December in Atlanta by Dr. Alan Kozarsky, but had determined it was worth any risk. "Sure it was nerve-wracking," he said. "It's my career. If he messes up, I might not have vision in one of my eyes. But he did a great job."
Price has already enjoyed the lifestyle benefits of the procedure, such as seeing clearly when he wakes up. He said he hasn't noticed any differences yet on the field, though he figures that's likely to be more applicable when he's looking in for signals or under the lights. "It's not going to hurt, that's for sure," he said.
NAVARRO SUED: C Dioner Navarro, his wife and their foundation have been sued by his former agent, Tampa-based Startrust (led by Kendall Almerico) for breach of contract.
In the suit, filed last week in Hillsborough Circuit Court, Startrust claims Navarro and his wife owe fees and expenses dating to 2005 and seeks reimbursement, including money loaned to Sherley Navarro to cover her cell phone and data card bills.
Almerico did not return a message seeking comment. Navarro and his current agent were not available.
ANOTHER BAT? Having talked with Johnny Damon (who appears headed to the Tigers or White Sox), the Rays have interest in free agent (and, briefly, former Ray) Russell Branyan, a lefty swinger who hit 31 homers last season before being sidelined by back issues. He could compete for time in rightfield and add depth. The Indians are also interested and considered a more likely destination.
OLD MATH: Manager Joe Maddon said there won't be a catchy slogan or equation like 9=8 or '09 > '08 this season. "Playing it straight," he said. "That'll be it."
MISCELLANY: LF Carl Crawford will report with a new full-sleeve tattoo according to Web postings by the tattooer, known as Junk Roxxx. … Sun Sports will air three live spring games: March 19, 25; April 1. … Maddon and excutive VP Andrew Friedman will hold their pre-spring news conference today at noon (live on BHSN); the first workout is Friday at 10 a.m.