Chalk this one up as a savvy move by Jack Zduriencik and Billy Beane in the "let's frustrate Rays fans" game. Michael Morse has long been one of the most coveted off season targets in these parts, but he's going to Seattle (who already poached Kendry Morales) as part of a three team deal. Oakland is sending a couple interesting lower minors pitching prospects to Washington in A.J. Cole and Blake Treinen. Neither of them are top prospects, but both have good stuff, and while they've struggled with their ERA recently, their peripherals have remained strong. Oakland gave up some value, but it's not the type of package the Rays couldn't match if they had wanted to.
It's what Seattle is giving Oakland that will drive Rays fans mad: John Jaso. One has to wonder. Did Andrew Friedman offer the Nationals Josh Lueke when they were still looking for a reliever? Because by the transitive property. . .
Anyway, here's some more analysis of the deal from Jeff Sullivan, and a retrospective on Jaso by Dave Cameron.
- The Rangers signed Matt Harrison to a five year $55 million contract extension.
- The Spring Training schedule was announced.
- Here's a list of the best articles on The Hardball Times over the past year. Worth going back through if you missed them.Michael Morse may be gone, but we have Josh Lueke!