It is widely believed that pitcher David Price is about to embark on his final season with the Rays, that the 2012 American League Cy Young Award winner is about to price himself out of the market for the low-revenue club, just as Carl Crawford did after 2010 and B.J. Upton and James Shields did after last season. Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg said Sunday that among the members of the team’s front office, that conclusion has not been reached and it is possible for the Rays to keep Price beyond this season. “Oh yeah, sure,” Sternberg said. “Absolutely.” But at what cost? Sternberg acknowledged future payrolls will be hamstrung by the six-year, $100 million extension the team gave in November to third baseman Evan Longoria. “(A contract like that is) gargantuan for us,” Sternberg said. “Numbers like that are a huge commitment for any team, and for us they’re as close to being off the table as possible, yet we did one this past offseason.” Price will earn $10.1125 million this season. He is arbitration eligible for two more years, so he does remain under team control through the 2015 season. Yet, the $10 million mark seems to be the ceiling for Rays players. “In a perfect world I could spend my whole career here. I feel at home with this organization. It’s a very special feeling that a lot of other guys probably don’t have elsewhere in baseball,” Price said. “If we could work something out, like I said before, that would be awesome and if not, I understand.” Price said he is keenly aware of what other pitchers are making. Seattle’s Felix Hernandez signed a seven-year extension last month worth $175 million. Zach Greinke signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers during the offseason for $147 million over six years. In 2010, Detroit’s Justin Verlander signed a five-year, $80 million extension.
Rays Owner: Tampa Bay Rays can afford to pay David Price
Tampa Tribune | Mar 11