UPDATE, 6:02 PM:
Adam Rubin of ESPN New York just tweeted the following –
If the Rays were reluctant to part with a pitcher once Jeremy Hellickson injured himself, why would they be willing to part with one now? Especially to fill a position that isn’t a position of need?
Again, no one should be stunned if the Rays go after Franklin, but the timing of the below report seems a bit odd.
May 1, 2012; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays executive vice president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman talks to the media after signing designator hitter Hideki Matsui (not pictured) to a minor league contract at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Heyman cites sources who say that the Rays “may actually match up better” with Seattle, but doesn’t offer a reason as to why.
Franklin, 22, is reportedly on the trading block due to Seattle’s glut of middle infielders.
Tampa Bay has shortstop Yunel Escobar under contract for this year, and they hold a relatively inexpensive team on him option for 2015, meaning they’d likely use Franklin at second base if acquired.
It’s interesting that Heyman cites sources who feel the Rays may match up better with Seattle in a potential deal.
The Mariners are interested in young starting pitching and the Mets have one of the best young crops of pitching in all of baseball. The Rays, on the other hand, will likely deal ace David Price this year before he hits free agency. They may be willing to deal some of their young pitching, but they’re not necessarily overstocked in that department.
The Rays have a nose for talent, and it shouldn’t be surprising if they have legitimate interest in Franklin. However, there’s always a chance Scott Boras is leaking misinformation in an effort to get the Mets to up their offer for his client Stephen Drew.