While a handful of high-profile transactions have already come and gone this offseason, a potential deal involving Tampa Bay Rays ace David Price has simmered quietly in the shadows. Indeed, the Price storyline has mostly been a slow burn, cropping up in reports occasionally but never really coming into focus.
You won't want to hear this if you're clamoring for another blockbuster swap, but the Price saga could take as much as another two years to play out. Price, the 2012 AL Cy Young winner, is under team control through the 2015 season, and though the Rays are wise to explore trading him now in hopes of maximizing the return, they don't have to move him.
That being said, the Rays have been at this crossroads with a homegrown star pitcher before. They traded James Shields to the Kansas City Royals last offseason, two years before he was eligible for free agency. The return? A package of prospects headlined by 2013 AL Rookie of the Year winner Wil Myers. So, there's something of a precedent here, both in terms of the timing and what Tampa Bay will probably want back.
The question is, then, which teams are the best fits for Price, and what would they have to give up to get him?