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Rays Rumors: Alfonso Soriano, James Shields and B.J. Upton

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June 25, 2012; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs left fielder Alfonso Soriano (12) hits a single in the first inning against the New York Mets at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-US PRESSWIRE
June 25, 2012; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs left fielder Alfonso Soriano (12) hits a single in the first inning against the New York Mets at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-US PRESSWIRE

The Tampa Bay Rays decision to buy or sell this summer will be dictated by the club’s health, executive vice president Andrew Friedman told Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.

"So much of what we do or how aggressive we are or what we focus on will be dictated by our health," executive vice president Andrew Friedman.

The Rays are currently without injured outfielder Matt Joyce and third baseman Evan Longoria. Topkin notes that if the club knew each player would return soon, they could focus on their obvious needs.

These needs include bolstering their offense, and the Rays have already been tied to Chicago Cubs outfielder Alfonso Soriano, according to Topkin.

However, if the Rays continue to lose and Longoria and Joyce remain sidelined, Buster Olney of ESPN reported last week that Tampa Bay could look to become sellers and trade veterans and free agents-to-be, including Carlos Pena, James Shields and B.J. Upton.

Topkin doesn’t believe this is likely, given the fact that the Rays have said they’re committed to winning this season. Tampa Bay is currently 7 ½ games behind the American League East-leading New York Yankees but only 1 ½ games out of the AL’s final wild-card spot.

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Should the Rays be buyers or sellers this summer?

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