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For Evan Longoria, losing teammates has to be getting old

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If the trade of Logan Forsythe by the Tampa Bay Rays was tough for you to see, imagine it through the eyes of Evan Longoria.

He is  31, and his chances are fading away. His team keeps trading todays for tomorrows, and the payroll remains low, and the team’s place is in the cellar. And now, a trusted comrade is bound for Los Angeles, following the departure of so many others. David Price and Ben Zobrist and James Shields and Carl Crawford and B.J. Upton and the rest of them.

And so you have to wonder: Are the Rays running out of time? Is Longoria?

Perhaps that is why it didn’t sit well with Longo when the team turned loose of Forsythe to obtain the Dodgers’ Jose De Leon.

“I’m surprised and upset at losing a player, clubhouse presence and friend like Logan,” Longoria told the Tampa Bay Times. “He’s a rare player.”

For the Rays, it’s the only way to keep afloat. The farm system hasn’t done well, and there is no money for the top free agents. So the only way the Rays can survive is to trade veterans, and their high paychecks, for younger players.

But that doesn’t mean it’s always a good solution for the players, who watch teammates leave.

And Longo. The guy in the third row?

He knows just how you feel.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit

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