The American League Cy Young award has barely been given to David Price of the Tampa Bay Rays, and obviously everyone within the organization must be excited for his recognition. However, there could be a few different reasons for their excitement.
If they are ever going to trade him, now would most obviously be the time. He has just maximized his value.
First of all, he is under team control for three more years. That exponentially increases his value because he would not simply be a one-year rental. Three years would actually give him time to get settled into his new home, and that may have implications when he finally hits the free-agent market.
Players like to stay at places where they are comfortable, and in three years, I would assume that he could become comfortable in the right situation. That enhances the chance of that team signing him to a long-term deal when it comes down to that. At first, it is a three year relationship, but it could develop into much more than that.
Secondly, he just proved that he was the best pitcher in the American League in 2012. Is there really anything else he can do to enhance his value farther? The old saying goes that once you're on the top, the only way you can go is down.
If the Tampa Bay Rays decide that they want to trade Price, they will obviously want the maximum return. The 27-year-old left-hander would certainly generate a lot of interest, and Tampa Bay would essentially have the choice of which attractive offer they want.
If the Rays decide they want to move Price, there will never be a better time than right now. Waiting until the end of 2013 will only allow more room for decline and allow another year of cheap service to expire. Trading Price would be a major change for this franchise, and if they are convinced that they need to get even younger than they already are, this would be the time to pull the trigger.
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