Friedman On Catching, Offseason, Maddon Extension

Rays executive VP of baseball operations Andrew Friedman was interviewed on 620-WDAE radio on Thursday, and Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times has a few of the interview's highlights…

  • The team is "a little uncomfortable" in pairing an inexperienced catcher like Jose Lobaton or Robinson Chirinos alongside veteran Jose Molina, but Friedman thinks the Rays' catching situation has been upgraded from 2011.  The Rays looked at a few different catchers this winter but, aside from Molina, weren't able to work out a deal with any of them.  The 36-year-old Molina has spent much of his 12-year career as a backup, reaching the 245-plate appearance plateau just twice in his career.
  • Friedman was very pleased with the fact that the Rays were able to add hitting and bullpen depth without giving up a starting pitcher or making a move that would hurt the team's defense.  "If you had told me then where we stand now with upgrading where we did and also maintaining our depth in the meantime, I would have said that that was a dream scenario,'' Friedman said.  "We still have a lot of work to do in terms of this division and this league, but as far within the scope of what we can do, this off-season worked out very well in our estimation.’’ 
  • Friedman expects Joe Maddon to remain in Tampa Bay for years to come.  Topkin reported two weeks ago that Maddon and the Rays are expected to announce a three-year contract extension for the manager before the start of Spring Training.


23 Responses to Friedman On Catching, Offseason, Maddon Extension Leave a Reply

  1. Snoochies8 3 years ago

    hey friedman, a’s have a catcher who’s excellent at working with young staffs. he’s sucked at hitting unfortunately, but a move to the al east would for sure help. he’s also under control through 2014, so if you guys get someone who’s a good catching prospect and a year or two away from the mlb, he’d be the guy you want to fill in in the meantime….

  2. kdawg89 3 years ago

    I’d be happy with Kurt Suzuki or Geovany Soto along with Molina. Could make the Rays legitimate World Series contenders barring any major injuries. Guess we’ll see.

    • diesel2410 3 years ago

      I’d be extremely pleased with one of the two. Maybe I value Soto a bit higher because of his pop

      • kdawg89 3 years ago

        I don’t know…Suzuki has been pretty consistent..Soto had that good rookie season and has struggled since…They’re pretty close though and I believe Soto has a friendlier contract.

  3. That is why I am surprised they didn’t contact the Reds about Yonder Alonso and Yasmani Grandal.. Could have had a future franchise 1B and C. But, oh well, we got Latos and still have one heck of a farm system. Good job Jocketty

  4. alan104 3 years ago

    I wonder who the catchers were that Friedman was unable to work out a deal with? Sounds like he had to settle for less than he wanted but still got an upgrade over last season at the catcher position. The Rays really need to find an everyday catcher. Molina is a great framer and is hard to run against but he has poor defensive skills. Lots of past balls.  

    • kdawg89 3 years ago

      They worked out Pudge but he was wanting like a $3 million deal with incentives. (supposedly) He needs to take what he can get at this point so he can get the 3,000 hits. They also took a look at Bengie Molina

  5. alan104 3 years ago

    Love Joe Maddon, great manager and conissuer of fine wines.

  6. bigpat 3 years ago

    Why are they using a shoe designer at catcher? Lobaton? 

  7.  I think Maddon could have had any number of jobs next year. Maybe even the Red Sox. 

  8. I don’t see the catching as better than last year or any year that I can remember.  I don’t see anything that is even a good back-up catcher no less one that could be called a starter.  I don’t dispute the fact that the catching needed to be improved upon but what I see scares me.  I didn’t agree with anything that transpired this offseason other than signing Moore long term and re-signing Maddon.  I felt the same way about the bullpen situation  last year only to be pleasantly surprised with the exception of JP Howell who should have done mop up duty to get some work in but not used as often as he was.

  9. JacksTigers 3 years ago

    If Leyland retires after this season, then I want Maddon.

    • RAYS7 3 years ago

      I was very surprised that the Rays didnt push for a catcher . I think either Suzuki or Soto would have fit well with the Rays . I also thought that Chris Snyder could have been a possible fit too . But Just because the Rays didn’t sign another catcher , doesn’t mean that one position is gunna hold them down . The Rays are used to having catchers hit for a low average . But we will just have to wait and see what happens . I think Jose Lobaton needs to be taken out of the picture . Chirinos or Stephen Vogt need to be on the roster .

      • Snoochies8 3 years ago

        i agree, suzuki is just too perfect of a fit.

        a’s are selling, and he’s excellent with young staffs. he may not hit well with oakland, but a jump to playing mostly in hitters parks would help a lot. who would you guys give up?

        i wanna say tim beckham, but i doubt the rays are ready to just trade him away quite yet

  10. johnsilver 3 years ago

    Wonder why the Rays didn’t try to bring back Shoppach again since he went so cheap?

    • alan104 3 years ago

      Why do you think he went so cheap? Perhaps his ability to play had something to do with it. Kelly Shoppach was a huge disappoint with Tampa and I can’t forsee him being able to help Boston very much.

  11. j6takish 3 years ago

    Davis/Niemann aren’t under team control long enough for the A’s, they are totally tearing it down this year

  12. Snoochies8 3 years ago

    wade davis and jeff niemann are under contract past 2012? if they are i dunno how much of a fit they are in oakland. i’m thinking suzuki for a low level prospect, obviously not a top 10 prospect though

    unless maybe tyson ross was thrown into the mix as well.

  13. Snoochies8 3 years ago

    well, it’s sort of a strange situation for them, they’re not under contract for long enough, but they’re also under contract for too long, if that makes any sense

  14. A seven-year deal isn’t long enough. That’s terribly unfortunate. Wade Davis signed a 7-year deal last March.

  15. buddaley 3 years ago

     The Davis deal is only guaranteed through 2014 (3 years now) with 3 years of club options or a $2.5 million buyout. In 2012-14 he gets $1.5, 2.8 & 4.8 million. The club options are for $7, 8 & 10 million.

      I think that Niemann has 2 more arbitration years left after losing his first arbitration this year when he will receive $2.75 million.

  16. diesel2410 3 years ago

    You know the term “team control” covers option years…….

  17. buddaley 3 years ago

     Of course I do. I was simply specifying the committed costs to the team that has him and separating them from the optional costs.

      I think that makes a difference to a team like the A’s which may evaluate Davis as really only under their control for 3 more years since they may project there is little chance they would consider him valuable enough to activate their club options at those prices

      The Rays generally extend players in this fashion, buying out their arbitration years and then giving themselves options for their first few free agent  years. 

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