By Dory LeBlanc
It is now Day 2 of the MLB Winter Meetings, and WDAE continues to bring you the best local coverage and insight of the Tampa Bay Rays' offseason.
Tuesday morning, Rays Radio Pre/Post-game host Neil Solondz joined Tom Jones and Rick Stroud on The Sports Page to talk about what is on the horizon for the Rays and David Price talks. When asked if he felt Price would be a member of the club on opening day, Solondz leaned towards the 2012 Cy Young Winner being gone, but left a little room for the possibility Price remains the Rays' ace.
"If I'm a betting man, I go 60/40 no, but at the same time I don't think they're going to trade him just to trade him," Solondz said. "You can connect a couple dots yesterday when Andrew Friedman said, 'we don't expect to go to market for another starting pitcher like we did with Roberto Hernandez,' so that means if they trade David Price, to have the proper starting pitching depth, then they need to get a Major League-ready starting pitcher in return. So, if they don't get that then I don't think they deal him."
To listen to the segment with Solondz in its entirety, click the player below:
Next, Freed jumped on with Ron Diaz on The Ron and Ian Show and took a slight hiatus from the Price talk to discuss with Diaz the catching situation and got very passionate when it came to the reasons why the Rays should keep first baseman James Loney.
"(If) you think about what the Rays paid Carlos Pena during a decent chunk of time, I think it was 3 years/$27 million, I don't know if the Rays go that high for Loney," Freed said. "But I'll tell you what, he becomes very valuable for this team for his left-handed bat and what he does in the field. He is fabulous in the field. The Rays have been so blessed with defensive first basemen, but he is absolutely fantastic. And I really learned throughout the year he really has a fire to him. We had asked someone with the Red Sox, you know, he was with them for a short amount of time two years ago, and we asked, 'So, what do you think of Loney?' And they said, 'Oh, he's passionateless.' I mean, okay, he's kind of a quiet guy, but oh my goodness when you're around him, he has an absolute very strong will to win, he is not a passionless player; he's a very passionate player in fact."
Freed goes on to say that Loney is as good a defensive first baseman as you will find and that he would very much like to see Loney stay in Tampa Bay.
To hear everything Freed had to say Tuesday, click the player below: