Mark, you ball hogging, eddie munster looking hooker. All Andrew Friedman has done since he joined the Rays(ahem…Devil Rays) after the 2005 season is get good players in the Tampa Bay uniform. Heʼs given up some players i like, but i donʼt think itʼs
because he gives up on them too early.
He had to get rid of Elijah Dukes and Delmon Young. Apparently they only talked to each other, and neither one liked anyone else on the team nor were they liked by anyone else on the team. Plus, I think a couple good rules when running a team are:
- if a player throws a bat at a home plate umpire in a minor league game(regardless of what a bad call it was), heʼs probably not a quality guy for the clubhouse.
- you should probably trade a guy if he sends his girlfriend a text that is just a picture of a gun. doesnʼt matter what you get in return. in this case a young lefty pitcher who canʼt even smell AA ball from the mound he pitches on.
Tough to say giving up Edwin Jackson was smart for the lone reason that he threw a no-no against the Rays last year. But…Edwin had one good season after being Ed-Lose for a very long time in Tampa, we needed an outﬁelder and at the time we thought Joyce was the guy, and we had too many starters on our pitching staff. We had Shields, Garza, Kazmir and a bunch of young guys who were almost ready. Thatʼs just smart
GMing. Is GMing a useable verb? I think so.
Garza loves the stage. The Big Stage. Playing in the NL Central is not going to be good for him, because they donʼt offer stages the size that Garza had in the AL East. I was not a fan of giving him up this off-season, but I understand it. We have 5 good starters and Hellickson needs starts in the bigs to become the stud pitcher that we believe heʼll be.
Johnny Gomes is going to be kicked out of the league soon. Heʼs a hot head. Let me interject right here that I absolutely love Johnny Gomes…but heʼs going to do something to get himself kicked out. It might be steroids, it might be other performing enhancement drugs or he could throw a snake at a pitcher from the dugout before he runs out and takes on an opposing team like heʼs in an old Bruce Lee movie. When Shields was obviously going to throw at Coco Crisp against Boston a couple years ago, Gomes had practically rushed the ﬁeld ﬁsts-a-blazin before the ball hit the upper thigh of
Crisp. Hot Head. Sad to see him go, but not gonna fault Friedman for that one.
Thereʼs a few more(Kazmir, Pena, Huff, Cantu), but the last one Iʼll mention is Josh Hamilton. Josh Hamilton got a second chance with the Rays. Josh Hamilton got a third chance with the Rays. Josh Hamilton got several more chances with the Rays, but he wasted those chances on heroine. Heʼs making the best of his 23rd chance, and sure heʼs a bonaﬁde All-Star MVP Caliber player, but getting mad at Friedman for letting him go would be like getting mad at the band Drive Shaft from LOST for kicking Charlie out. Sure, thereʼs potential for him to go on to do great things, but itʼs obviously not going to happen where he was.
Friedman – 10
Players he gave up on – 3 and a half
Donʼt question the math, unless you want an answer that doesnʼt make sense.