Report: Mariners, Dodgers, Pirates among teams pursuing David Price
Is the trade market for Rays ace David Price heating up? Yahoo!'s Jeff Passan says yes.
Passan writes that the Mariners, Dodgers, Angels, Pirates, Rangers, Diamondbacks and Blue Jays are among the teams with serious interest in dealing for Price. While it's too early to start declaring front-runners, sources tell Passan that the Mariners are in a strong position to acquire Price, what with their impressive core of young and presumably tradable talent.
It's easy to understand why there's a healthy market for Price. The former AL Cy Young winner and three-time All-Star is still just 28 years of age, and he's not eligible for free agency until after the 2015 season.
Price is coming off a 2013 season in which he pitched to a 3.33 ERA (114 ERA+) and a 1.10 WHIP in 186 2/3 innings. While the ERA was higher than his career norms (lifetime mark of 3.19, 122 ERA+), Price was outstanding after he fully recovered from the triceps injury that delayed the start of his season. As well, Price posted the best control numbers of his career, and he led the AL with a K/BB ratio of 5.59. In July, for instance, Price struck out 35 while walking only one. The strong peripherals suggest that he's going to resume pitching like a frontline Cy Young contender, provided he has a bit better luck in 2014.
The track record, the relative youth and the underlying strength of his 2013 numbers -- that's why Price, if indeed he is traded, will net the Rays the sheik's ransom in return.