07/21/11 7:03 PM ET
Shields, Upton not paying attention to trade talk
By Anthony Chiang / MLB.com
The two Rays have been linked to multiple teams as the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline closes in. But Upton and Shields aren't letting that talk seep into the clubhouse.
"They're going to do what they need to do, man," Upton said. "That's the front office's decision. I've got nothing to do with it. Right now, we're still very much in the race. There's a lot of games left to be played. We just got to go out and try to win them, and that's my job, to help this team win."
According to various reports, the Reds are interested in Shields, and the Braves are looking into Upton.
"I don't really care about the trade rumors," Shields said.
Tampa Bay went into its current homestand against Boston and New York knowing the string of games would play a big role in the team's decision to become buyers or sellers at the Trade Deadline. The Rays entered Thursday's game with a 2-4 record on the homestand, and an eight-game gap between them and the Red Sox at the top of the American League East.
For players like Upton and Shields, who have spent their entire Major League careers with the Rays, the thought of leaving Tampa Bay is one they don't want to contemplate.
"I grew up through the Minor Leagues with a lot of these guys," Upton said. "I love being here, I love playing with them, and I just hope for the best."
Anthony Chiang is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.