By Scott Barancik, editor

For Sam Fuld, the Tampa Bay Rays have been the “perfect organization,” a team that appreciated his aggressiveness on the basepaths and competence in the outfield. Had the Chicago Cubs not traded him in 2011, he might never have had enough playing time to achieve legendary status for his diving catches, and to inspire a fan giveaway like the Rays’ “Super Sam” Fuld cape.

But the 32-year-old’s tenure with the Rays likely ended yesterday when the team opted not to tender him an offer. The decision leaves Fuld a free agent for the first time in his six-year MLB career.

“I knew it was a possibility,” Fuld said Monday. “By no means did I think it was a sure thing that I’d be tendered. I was prepared for it at some level. Given the season I had last year, it’s not all together surprising.” Fuld hit just .199 in 119 games last season.

Neither Fuld nor the Rays ruled out the possibility of reaching a deal before the season begins, but the Stanford alum said there was only a “1-in-30 chance.”

“For the first time in my life, I have some say in who I play for,” he added.

Like Fuld, outfielder Ryan Kalish became a free agent Monday after the Boston Red Sox declined to tender an offer. The 25-year-old Kalish has undergone back and shoulder surgery in recent years and was out all of 2013.

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