Gershon Rabinowitz over at Baseball Essential provided a high level interview with Stu Sternberg in an article this afternoon. Topics were covered broadly, but two more poignant questions stood out to me:
BBE: This past season, the Rays have suffered their first losing season since 2007, falling to fourth place in the Eastern Division. Given the struggles offensively, do the Rays plan on changing their offensive approach at all next season, since their current philosophy of contact/line drive hitting has not produced as expected?
SS: Power is expensive. In an ideal world, we would have a team full of players that could hit for power, run well and field well. There are not enough of those to go around and even less in our price range. We do the best with our resources.
BBE: Recently you announced the team was slashing payroll for next season after committing a record $80 million dollars to player expenditures in 2014. What made you decide to make this change and what benefits are there from a competitive standpoint of a reduced payroll?
SS: We have gotten to the postseason twice with a forty million dollar payroll. Reducing the payroll does not help your chances, however reality is reality. The payrolls we have had since 2009 are for the most part not sustainable.
Sternberg was not shy about the desire to cut payroll, and that's something we've already seen in practice this season as many season Rays players have been shown the door for prospects and younger alternatives.
For more, please follow the link and check out the full interview.