The Detroit Tigers and Los Angeles Angels – who are known to be looking at starting pitchers – were among the clubs that had scouts in attendance Friday when Tampa Bay right-hander James Shields started against Seattle.
The Boston Red Sox, another club trying to add starting pitching, had a talent evaluator on hand as well. So did the New York Yankees, Pittsburgh Pirates, San Francisco Giants and Toronto Blue Jays.
Shields, 30, is having a below-average season by ERA+ but is appealing to clubs because of his track record and favorable contract. The Rays hold club options for 2013 ($9 million) and 2014 ($12 million).
The Tigers and Angels have interest in Phillies left-hander Cole Hamels, but Shields may be more attainable because of the possibility Hamels will sign a long-term deal in Philadelphia. The Tigers have had interest in Shields for years, sources say, and could have the catching prospects (Rob Brantly or James McCann) the Rays want in return.
Rays general manager Andrew Fr...