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Tampa Bay Rays Notes: Team Needs To Trade A Starting Pitcher

The Rays have one of the deepest arsenals of quality starting pitchers and have the advantage in a very weak market.

The Tampa Bay Rays are in an incredible enviable position.

They currently have over a dozen arms on their 40-man roster who are capable of being average to above average starting pitchers and right now in a pitching depleted market, the Rays hold all of the cards.

Their projected starting rotation currently features staff ace, Chris Archer, followed by Jake Odorizzi, Drew Smyly, Alex Cobb, and Blake Snell. Behind them on the depth chart in no particular order is Erasmo Ramirez, Matt Andriese, and Chase Whitley, meanwhile they have several top prospects primed to start the year in Triple-A Durham and who are chewing at the bit for the chance to pitch in the majors.

With the Rays, any one of these starting pitchers could be dealt with the most likely candidates being Odorizzi, Smyly, and Cobb, all three of whom are currently up for arbitration raises which put them on the trade block when it comes to the budget strapped Rays. The trio all have very cheap contracts when compared to the contracts and value given up for quality pitching the past few years. Thus allowing the Rays to take advantage of a seller's market, giving them the opportunity to sit back and wait for the an offer that blows them away.

However, the Rays may not find themselves with this type of opportunity again and they need to capitalize on the situation at hand, whether it be to restock the farm system or to acquire top line pieces who would contribute during the upcoming season.

So far this winter, the trio have been discussed numerous times, but nothing has come to fruition as of yet, but with just over a month until pitchers and catchers report, something is bound to happen, sooner rather than later.

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