The Minnesota Twins have reached out to the Tampa Bay Rays to express interest in acquiring pitcher James Shields in a trade, The Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo reported Sunday.
In his report, Cafardo also identifies the Los Angeles Dodgers as a team that could be in play for Shields. From Cafardo's report:
We suspect the Rays will field a lot of calls on him in the coming weeks. Whether they pull the trigger in order to obtain offense remains to be seen. With former Rays special adviser Gerry Hunsicker now in LA, the Dodgers may make a push to get Shields, but what could they give back? Ethier? It makes sense if they have their eye on Hamilton. But the Rays may not be able to carry Ethier's contract. They have already received inquiries on Shields from the Twins.
Shields, who will be 31 in December, remains a relative bargain for the next two seasons if he can stay as productive as he's been for the last two seasons. He is due just $9 million next season, and his contract calls for a club option for $12 million in 2014. Shields went 15-10 with the Rays last season with a 3.52 ERA, and he had 223 strikeouts to just 58 walks in 227 2/3 innings.