ST. PETERSBURG It was more than the end of the season for the Tampa Bay Rays Wednesday night. For B.J. Upton, it was most likely the end of the road with only organization he has ever known in 10 years as a professional baseball player.
On the verge of becoming a free agent, the Rays' veteran center fielder should command some enticing offers from ball clubs interested his blend of power, speed and defense a reality that will most likely make it too hard for the budget-constrained Rays to compete for his services in 2013.
That's why Upton, a first-round Tampa Bay pick from the 2002 amateur draft, was keenly aware of the finality of each moment as he made what will probably be his last drive to Tropicana Field Wednesday afternoon as a Ray preparing for the 2012 season finale against the playoff-bound Baltimore Orioles.
"I walked by the security guards, the police officers and the clubhouse guys and just kind of wondered if that's it," he said. "I think it's just now starting to...