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Rauch, Friedman, Upton

Rays Remain Interested in Rauch

Updating a previously covered rumor, the Rays are apparently scouting Nationals reliever Jon Rauch, per a report:

In other news, a baseball source said scouts from the White Sox and Rays are looking at reliever Jon Rauch, who has been the team's best pitcher with a 2.85 ERA and 17 saves.

The Rays, who are in the Wild Card and American East Division races, are looking at Rauch as a set-up man. With Troy Percival so fragile, the Rays would also consider Rauch being a closer.

The price for Rauch was reported as higher than the price for Brian Fuentes, but he's definitely a more intriguing, in the short and long term, and likely more talented option.

Friedman on Deadline Deals

Thank the baseball gods every night that Andrew Friedman is our general manager. Friedman provided this gem to Marc Topkin's Sunday column concerning whether the recent losing streak would change the team's perspective on trades:

"Had we flip-flopped our seven-game winning streak and our seven-game losing streak, people would be talking about how we went into the break as one of the hottest teams in baseball and (we) don't need anything at all," Friedman said. "That's one of the challenges in this job. You can't get too high, and you can't get too low.

That's simply too logical.

Upton Moved Down in Lineup

And now short rant time, the topic is B.J. Upton being moved down to seventh due to his slumping. I don't have a problem with moving slumping players down like Maddon has, Carlos Pena for instance, but I do have a problem when it's a double standard. Despite his seemingly endless recent struggles Upton leads the team with a .380 on-base percentage, essentially he gets on base the most, moving him down to 7th is hurting the lineup, but I'll go along with this idea of moving players down who are struggling only to ask how Carl Crawford is getting a pass in the second slot despite recent coldness and a season OBP of .314.

If you really want that lineup to spark try putting Upton second and moving Crawford to seventh, but I guess that could be grounds for an ambush accusation.