Wait ... Why Do The Rays Want Francisco Cordero?

A few days ago, word was that Francisco Cordero had a number of surprise suitors, the Tampa Bay Rays being among them. This seems a touch crazy though. Cordero fits in only one of the Rays' typical free agent criteria, and its an unimportant one at that:

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As far as free agents go, the Rays typically look for the above items. However, three of those items (age, injury, and down season) work in service to one of them (price). If all three are yes, but price is no, then it doesn't matter. Price matters more.

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The last item -- being undervalued by traditional analysis -- is another big one. For instance, Jason Bartlett fit into that category in 2007 when the Rays pursued him and Matt Garza. Also, Jose Molina fits that bill right now.

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The Rays are typically too poor to go after an established closer who is coming off a string of five-straight 30+ saves seasons. They have to find cheap arms like Jason Isringhausen and Troy Percival -- past-their-prime relievers who recently had a major injury. They go after the Joaquin Benoit and Juan Cruz types, not the traditional closers.

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In other words, I think there's a legit chance the Rays are in fact not pursuing Cordero. Honestly, nothing about it sounds Raysian. Tack on the fact the Rays actually had excellent production from the top of their bullpen last year, and the whole rumor -- which was started by Cordero himself -- begins to sound fishy.

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I'm not saying Cordero lied about the Rays inquiring about him, all I'm saying is the Rays pretty much have no desire or precedent to suggest they will sign a $10M reliever.

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