Winter meetings preview: Five pitchers for Rays to consider

There's an interesting mix of options, though more possibilities on the trade front.
New York Mets' Noah Syndergaard returns to the dugout at the end of the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Miami Marlins, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)
New York Mets' Noah Syndergaard returns to the dugout at the end of the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Miami Marlins, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)
Published December 7

The Rays have plenty of guys who could be good starters, such as Jalen Beeks, Yonny Chirinos and Ryan Yarbrough. And a few due back during the season from injury, such as Brent Honeywell, Jose De Leon and Anthony Banda. So in trading for or signing one now, the idea is get a sure thing, or something close, and in most cases on a short term deal.  Some realistic options:

1. RHP Noah Syndergaard, Mets

Yes, the Mets say they're unlikely to deal him because the "chips are in" to win. But can be so good and such a good fit at only 26, making $6 million in 2019 with three years until free agency, Rays have to explore.

2. RHP Charlie Morton, free agent (Astros)

Another potential solid match as 35-year-old is looking for short-term deal, made $7 million plus incentives each of last two years, won 29 games with a 3.36 ERA, has postseason experience.

3. RHP Trevor Bauer (Indians)

Most appealing Indians trade option with Carlos Carrasco signing long-term and Corey Kluber more expensive. Outspokenness creates some issues. Projected to make $11.6 million in third of four arbitration years.

4. RHP Lance Lynn, free agent (Yankees)

Solid veteran with Cardinals (72-47, 3.38 over six years) who signed late last year and struggled in AL with Twins/Yankees, making $12 million. Will be 32 in May, should be open to short deal.

5. RHP Sonny Gray, Yankees

Obviously the Oakland Gray is much more appealing version, so the gamble is that a change of scenery yields a return to form. Projected $9.1 million salary is workable, trading within the division maybe not.

Other possibilities: RHP Chris Archer, Pirates (just kidding); LHP Madison Bumgarner, Giants; RHP Michael Fulmer, Tigers; RHP Jon Gray, Colorado Rockies; RHP Aaron Sanchez, Blue Jays; RHP Marcus Stroman, Blue Jays

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