It will be years from now we will look back at June 12, 2006 and realize it as a historic day in the Tampa Devil Rays history. It will be remembered as the day the Devil Rays new brain trust finally realized their destiny and started putting the moves in place that will shape the future of the franchise for years to come.
In the move yesterday with Aubrey Huff being traded to the Houston Astros, the Rays are looking to the future by sheding an important player of their past. Gone is a very good player, but what we did was start to put the Maddon stamp on the franchise. One that we'll miss the Aubrey Huff game changing plays with his bat in the mid season where his bat would be on fire. But along with that bat, came a player who was very much like a guy named Lou with hs desire to turn the corner now, and was not really concerned about tommorow.
If your hear the pulse of baseball community, the impression is "here the Rays go again" trading an important player for what amounts to players we never heard of. The suffering fans of Tampa Bay are saying I thought we wanted to be competitive in the AL East, or atleast continue putting the hurt on teams like the Yankees or Red Sox. The tune of the Rays don't keep players long enough, they just wait til they get good, and trade them for players that they replenish through their system.
But, make no mistake, this was not a Montreal Expos like move, but in fact a Billy Beane type move. In acquiring a players that fits the MoneyBall like style that Maddon likes. This trade was about getting a type of player to play SS that will have a chance to make all the plays up the middle while at the same time, puts the ball into play, and gets onto base like Paul DePodesta wet dream.
For those of you that have witnessed the show that David Wright has put on the past few season on NL hitting with his all around offensive game, that's what we are talking about with Upton. He can beat you in so many ways with his bat and his speed. Moving him to the corner is something that will be better for Upton, and the franchise. I don't buy that this is the wrong move. Like I have said before, I wanted to what is best for his psyche. The amount of errors he put up in minors can get to you after putting all that work in. I stand by my claim that I want to see Upton get his chance to arrive at majors at a less demanding position, and if he so wants to try SS again, we would be open to it. However, I think moving off SS will be a relief for Bossman. Now, he can concentrate at becoming an everyday offensive star.