(CBS) By all accounts, it was an offhand comment, part of a larger response to a hypothetical that may never materialize — but perhaps it was telling, too.
In facing the media blitz at the All-Star Game festivities on Monday, Rays ace left-hander David Price — the subject of countless trade rumors — was asked if he’d rather join a team that is winning now or one that he could stay with for years of winning.
His response then referenced the Cubs, who haven’t won a World Series since 1908.
“Winning absolutely is something you want to do,” Price told the St. Louis Dispatch. “Being a part of something special is also something you want to do. You can take that to a first-place team. You could take that all the way to a last-place team like the Cubs. With the talent they have coming up they could be a very special team in a few years as well. That would probably be the coolest city to win a championship in. They haven’t done it in I’m not sure how long. To do that there that would be the coolest city to win a championship in right now.”
Who knows what plays out with Price’s future, but there’s no doubt the Cubs will soon be in search of high-caliber pitching in the coming years with a farm system that’s stocked with highly regarded position players. To acquire the top-end starters they need, they’ll either have to trade some of their prospects or make a splash in free agency.
Either path could lead them into discussions for Price, as he’s currently set to hit free agency after the 2015 season. By 2016, the Cubs’ top prospects figure to have ascended to the majors, and they’ll at least be expected to contend for a playoff spot.
To his credit, Price addressed trade rumors head on, though he wouldn’t bite when asked where he might like play outside of Tampa Bay. He’s 9-7 with a 3.23 ERA this season, and he won the AL Cy Young in 2012.
“I would probably have a couple teams I wouldn’t mind going to,” Price said, according to the Post-Dispatch. “I feel like I should probably keep those teams to myself. They all play baseball.”