One of the teams the Orioles had to outlast to make the playoffs last season was the
The Rays dealt right-handers
I saw Shields’ final game in a Tampa Bay uniform. On the second-to-last game of the regular season, he lost a heart-breaking 1-0 decision to the Orioles at
It was the most dominating pitching performance I had seen all season long. Had Chris Davis not hit a solo homer, Shields might still be mowing down Orioles.
Shields was one of the best right-handers in the game over the past two seasons, and alongside
He will give the Royals an automatic ace, something I’m not convinced they had despite trading for
On the other hand, Rays executive vice president of baseball operations
He traded left-hander
We won’t mention Friedman’s signing of
With Shields set to make $9 million in 2013 (he also has a $12 million club option for 2014) and
Myers is the key. He hit .314/.387/.600 with 37 homers and 109 RBIs last year between Double-A and Triple-A.
One Orioles official told me that he believes the Rays got a steal – mainly because getting a 22-year-old right-handed power hitter under control for six full years is a godsend. He added that the other three prospects will be contributors.
The Rays need it. Their .240 team batting average was 12th out of 14 AL teams last season. They won games with their pitching. And Sunday's trade makes Tampa Bay's rotation a little less intimidating.