Roger Mooney covers the Tampa Bay Rays for The Tampa Tribune, TBO.com and News Channel 8. He has covered the Rays since their first season in 1998, including 11 years for the Bradenton Herald. Roger has also covered Florida, South Florida and Florida State football, the Bucs and the Lightning.
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Price pays a visit
Posted Dec 4, 2007 by Marc Lancaster
Updated Dec 4, 2007 at 05:28 PM
NASHVILLE—It worked out nicely that David Price was Baseball America’s College Player of the Year for 2007. He only had to drive across down to pick up his award today.
Price rolled into the Opryland Resort this afternoon and was met with a flurry of interviews before heading off to the awards gala. The top overall draft pick in 2007 said the Rays haven’t told him where he’ll begin the 2008 season and insisted he hadn’t given it much thought.
“If you’re asking me, I’m going to tell you I want to start in the big leagues,” he said. “That’s anybody – ask me when I was 12 years old and I would have said I want to be in the big leagues.”
Price will be in big league camp, but he’ll start the year somewhere in the minors—either Vero Beach or Montgomery would seem to make the most sense. That said, the Rays will keep a very open mind aobut how quickly the lefty progresses.
“He can come quickly,” Rays manager Joe Maddon said this afternoon, adding that it was within the realm of possibility for Price to reach the majors sometime in 2008.
Price had a chance to get to know some of the Rays’ players and instructors during the 10-day stint he spent in St. Petersburg this fall hanging around the instructional league, but he’s anxious to actually get into uniform and join them.
“I’ve met a lot of the guys, my future teammates, but pitching-wise, I really haven’t done anything,” he said. “Everybody’s like, ‘They’re paying you and you haven’t even thrown a pitch yet?’ I’m like, ‘Yeah, I guess so.’ I’m ready to get started.”