The Tampa Bay Rays have made it known to teams that ace pitcher Blake Snell is available in trade talks.
Last month, Blake Snell and the Tampa Bay Rays appeared to be on the verge of forcing a Game 7 in the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. But after surrendering his second hit of Game 6, Rays manager Kevin Cash got a bit too cute with his managing and pulled Snell from the game to go to the bullpen. The move backfired tremendously, as the Dodgers rebounded and secured their first Commissioner’s Trophy since 1988. Over a month after the drama, it appears the Rays are ready to move on from their ace.
According to Mark Feinsand of MLB.com, the Rays have contacted teams to let them know that Snell is available for trade. However, the team is not actively trying to flip him before the start of the 2021 season.
Rays in a financial bind
The idea of trading Snell has nothing to do with the fallout from the World Series. Rather, it has to do with the loss of revenue the Rays have endured due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. In fact, a source told Feinsand that trading Snell and the remaining $42 million owed to him over the next three years could help provide some flexibility for the team.
Feinsand says the teams that could potentially be interested in Snell’s services are the Atlanta Braves and Los Angeles Angels. But one wild-card team that could enter the mix are the Seattle Mariners, whom Feinsand mentions have been active trade partners with the Rays over the years. That, and Snell is from Seattle, so a reunion could be enticing for the ace.
In 11 starts this regular-season, Snell recorded a 3.24 ERA and 1.200 WHIP, while striking out 63 strikeouts over 50 innings of work. In six postseason games, the left-hander has a 3.03 ERA, a 1.15 WHIP and a 2-2 record to his credit.
While a move may not be imminent, the Rays let it be known to pitcher-needy teams that Snell is officially on the market.