The Tampa Bay Rays have some difficult decisions to make.
It is a very safe expectation that third baseman Evan Longoria, pitcher Matt Moore and pitcher Joel Peralta will all be on the roster next season. They are the only three players who have contracts in place, without requiring an option or potential arbitration.
It is also a very safe assumption that the remaining core of the roster will be comprised of young, talented key contributors including outfielder Wil Myers, outfielder Desmond Jennings, pitcher Chris Archer, pitcher Alex Cobb and catcher Jose Lobaton. The Rays value young, talented players and would not be able to afford to replace them in free agency with their budget restraints, and furloughs are not an option.
That is where the probability changes for key personnel from this season’s postseason run.
There are some very key contributors to the team, most notably ace David Price, who could be gone by the time Opening Day comes around.
Here is a look at the probability of six of the most important players returning to the Rays in 2014. Part of the evaluation will include the value of the player, determined by his cost compared to his production. Also, intangibles including leadership and experience will be considered along with organizational trends.
All statistics and contract information courtesy of baseball-reference.com