All of the Winter Meetings rumors can be intimidating to the average fan, so throughout the week I will try to post daily roundups recapping the biggest news related to the Rays. I will also throw in the huge stories in baseball when they happen. Here is the rumors from day one.
- Buster Olney tweeted that the Rays will have to be overwhelmed to trade BJ Upton, but are listening. It’s good to see the rumors will never die.
- Marc Topkin tweeted that Joe Maddon is confident for an extension, which is good news for Rays fans. The Rays need the franchise’s best manager to stick around for a while to get a few championships.
- The biggest news of the day was the Rays being linked to Josh Willingham, which I discussed at length earlier.
- CBS Sports’ Danny Knobler posted that the Rays are willing to trade Jeff Niemann and Wade Davis but must be overwhelmed to trade James Shields. He also posted that the Rays would like to trade Reid Brignac, upgrade their catching, and are listening on BJ Upton. The Reid Brignac piece is new, so we will see if anything happens there. The Rays must like Sean Rodriguez more and think he can be their full time shortstop. It would be nice to see the Rays add another catcher to go with Jose Molina, because I just don’t think Robinson Chirinos or Jose Lobaton are good enough.
- Speaking of BJ Upton, Jon Morosi tweeted that interest on BJ Upton has been “mild” so far. We will see if the Nationals make a play at him, since they have been interested for quite a while and have some pieces that could interest the Rays. If BJ Upton does get traded and the Rays sign Josh Willingham, it would be just as easy as moving Desmond Jennings to center and playing Willingham in left to fill the void.
- Finally, so we can put the rumors to rest, Bill Shaikin of the LA Times tweeted that Andrew Friedman has decided against taking the Astros job. There was probably very little chance of Friedman leaving anyway, but at least we can stop talking about it now.