Rays Trade Rumors: James Shields Drawing Interest

PHILADELPHIA, PA - JUNE 23: Starting pitcher James Shields #33 of the Tampa Bay Rays throws a pitch during interleague play against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on June 23, 2012 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Brian Garfinkel/Getty Images)

Tigers, Angels Interested in Shields?

Tampa Bay Rays right-hander James Shields has drawn interest from the Detroit Tigers and Los Angeles Angels, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com:

Rays veteran right-hander James Shields looks like a prime trade candidate and at least the Tigers and Angels are said to have interest.

Heyman hears that the Rays would be willing to trade "any of their five viable right-handed starters." This would not include southpaws David Price and Matt Moore. In exchange for Shields or another starter, Heyman says the Rays would be seeking "a young catcher and/or young pitcher."

There is apparently "nothing" to the report of the trade that would send Shields and Ben Zobrist to the Angels for Howie Kendrick and a package of younger players, says Heyman. He says LA is looking to strengthen their rotation, while the Tigers have been tied to pitching this summer.

Shields has struggled with the Rays this season, though he was one of baseball’s best starters in 2011. On the year, the 30-year-old has maintained an ERA and WHIP of 4.39 and 1.439, both somewhat higher than his career marks of 4.00 and 1.253.

Shields is making $7 million this season and his contract includes team options for 2013-14 for $9 million and $12 million with buyouts of $1.5 million and $1 million.

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