B.J. Upton is still a Ray. James Shields is still a Ray. Jeff Niemann and Wade Davis are still Rays. Casey Kotchman and Johnny Damon are still Rays. Even Kyle Farnsworth is still a Ray.
I can only assume the Rays didn’t make any deadline deals because the process said each was a bad move. I didn’t look at the deals to see if we’d have wanted what was offered but, I don’t think that is the point.
It is important to note that I shouldn’t complain about “the process” at the deadline while simultaneously celebrating it all winter. But, I can’t help but wonder whether ownership had a finger on the scale here.
There are a lot of good reasons to move BJ and Shields or least Davis or Niemann. But, it is at least reasonable to assume that the Rays were skittish about dealing popular players shortly after re-opening the stadium debate. They know, of course, that all those players can be traded during the winter. And they know that winter trades are much easier for fans to stomach because they don’t see the immediate changes.
So, that begs the question. Did the Rays put aside some short-term value in the name of public appearance? If they did, was that the right move?