I was thinking of writing something up like this today, but raysfaninminnesota beat me to it. Have at it. ~Slow
Ever since the Anthony Rizzo trade, impatience has started to affect Rays fans. A week of 2012 is already in the books, and still no major moves have been made. Not even the start of playoff football has been able to fill the void left by the quiet off-season. It's just too quiet. More and more teams are leaving the off-season party at a time when it doesn't even appear that they Rays have even shown up yet. Pitchers and catchers report in six weeks. Are the Rays too late?
"We're having a lot of conversations on both the trade front and also with free agents,'' he said. "I'm confident that we're going to end up with two hitters that will complement our existing offense and fit in very well. It's very difficult to handicap the timing but I wouldn't be surprised if something happened in the next couple weeks.''
Friedman is not concerned about names continuing to be crossed off the list. Instead there are targets he's still looking at that he believes will meet the off-season goals he set out to accomplish. The question Rays fans want to ask is this: Who?!?! Who's left? Topkin doesn't believe bringing back Pena will necessarily satisfy that need. Power, yes, but low average and strikeouts are two big reasons why the Rays were willing to let him go in the first place. So, if the Rays are still looking to the trade market to fill that bat, who is left? Here's Topkin's list:
With more than $40 million committed to 14 players, money of course is an issue. The White Sox's Paul Konerko could be a tremendous DH fit. The Nats' Adam LaRoche or, more intriguingly, Mike Morse? Maybe, as ESPN's Buster Olney suggested, the Mets' Daniel Murphy. K.C.'s Billy Butler? Hmmm.
There are no sources for this, so Topkin is just speculating names at this point. Either way, the indication he got from Friedman today is something will happen in the next couple weeks. And not a Posada type addition. Something bigger.
One last time for predictions. Who do you think the Rays will trade for? Will it be a middle-of-the-order bat the Rays seek? Will Friedman's patience pay off?