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July 27, 2005

Will's Mill

Keeping The Rumors Coming

by Will Carroll

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July 25 and July 26 Mill

Posted Wednesday, July 27, 9:25 p.m.: The Rangers' Alfonso Soriano [Ed. Note: This was an error in communication. The player Will intended to refer to was the Mets' Mike Cameron. We apologize for the mistake.--JSS], along with Mets prospects Lastings Milledge and Carlos Gomez, were all pulled from the lineup before their respective games on Wednesday evening. That's all the information I have right now, but it could be a sign that something is happening.

Posted Wednesday, July 27, 6:10 p.m.: Dave Littlefield is a popular guy. Noted for carrying his copy of BP 2005 around spring training in Bradenton last season, Littlefield might want to check the chapters on the Marlins and Cardinals. It looks like a deal with the Diamondbacks is off after scouts came away unimpressed with the names being offered. The Bucs are left then with the fallback position of sending Mark Redman full circle to the Marlins in return for...well, that's the question. Jeremy Hermida, Scott Olsen and Jason Vargas are all being mentioned in discussions. Is Littlefield more determined to get something to add to his collection of prospects or to dump the remainder of Redman's contract? There's a chance that this trade could include something of a "challenge" component, swapping Jose Mesa for Guillermo Mota.

The Bucs are also talking with the Cardinals about Matt Lawton. John Gall had a nice game last night, but Lawton is a legitimate hitter who would fit in well with the Cards. He can play left or right adequately. The Cards wanted Eric Byrnes but the Rockies seem intent on keeping the former A into next season.

Danys Baez is heading somewhere. Right now, the Devil Rays are sitting on a couple offers, including one from Philly. The Phils have offered Ryan Madson to the Rays, hoping that Baez would solidify the bullpen in front of Ugueth Urbina and Billy Wagner. Chuck LaMar's intractability seems to be paying off with offers from the Mets and Marlins also in the inbox. They'll also make a decision on Aubrey Huff, who seems destined to be a White Sock. Don't be surprised if Jorge Cantu ends up involved in a deal as well.

The Reds are standing pat. Period. What you see is what you get, Cincinnati. As many rumors have flown around Cincy in the last 72 hours, nothing's happening. Let's give points to Dan O'Brien for being honest all this time, even when we didn't believe him. All the Adam Dunn rumors can be buried, Ken Griffey Jr. and Austin Kearns can grumble a bit louder, and Wily Mo Pena will continue to frustrate and tantalize. Expect news on a Reds sale shortly after a Nationals sale is finalized. Carl Lindner thinks the losing bidders might look to the west...or east, in some cases.

Posted Wednesday, July 27, 4:45 p.m.: It's eerily quiet at the Mill. The Marlins have officially declined both Sox offers and appear to be ready to go to the brink on A.J. Burnett. They didn't get what they were looking for and Joe Sheehan's column details why. There will likely be a flurry of last-minute activity, though neither Sox variety is the kind that looks to make a desperate last-minute raise in their offer.

As well, the Twins are quiet too. They pulled out of preliminary "hey what about..." type discussions on a couple players and appear to have slowed talks with the Red Sox on a deal that included J.C. Romero. Romero, on the other hand, has told friends and family that he's headed out of Minnesota.

An Internet report from New York has discussions between the Mets and Red Sox ongoing. Theo seems to be in ten places at once, doesn't he? I wonder what kind of coffee he drinks. The rumors include some variation of Tom Glavine and Roberto Hernandez to the Sox for Kevin Millar and Kelly Shoppach. No team source on either side would comment. (Hat tip to Dan.)

Posted Wednesday, July 27, 2:15 p.m.:Once the Pirates end the flirtation with Florida that doesn't seem to be going anywhere, Dave Littlefield will still have plenty of time to send Mark Redman somewhere in the AL East. The Red Sox and Orioles are in the mix and--as with all rumors--the Yankees are in the lead for him. A deal will require some creativity since the Sox can offer better prospects at this stage. Expect the Yanks to be willing to take on some bad contracts or to involve a third team.

What were Tom Hicks and Peter Angelos talking about last night in Baltimore? I don't know, but it'd be interesting to hear two multi- millionaires chat during a game, wouldn't it? Hicks was in town to facilitate some discussions on Sidney Ponson. Peter Angelos will have to reach deep into his pockets to make this deal work and Ponson does not seem like the type of player who would mesh well with Buck Showalter. Joel Sherman says that Kenny Rogers' suspension will be upheld, which could force the Rangers' hand a bit.

I'm getting lots of questions about the rumored Adam Dunn-to-Oakland deal that's making the rounds of Internet discussion boards. Look, if I had heard something, wouldn't I tell you? The Astros have tired of being rebuffed on Dunn.

The Yankees appear to be going with quantity over quality. Hideo Nomo looks to be the latest fragile starter inserted in pinstripes once he is waived by the Devil Rays. The Yankees are looking at other, better options, so consider the signing of Nomo something like Plan B...or Z.

Posted Tuesday, July 26, 9:27 p.m.: Reds GM Dan O'Brien was asked by a Cincinnati writer about the Reds/Mets/ Ranger rumor discussed yesterday. His quote: "That gets an A for creativity and an F for reality." I guess we'll see who's holding the phone in Cincinnati, but if all that the Reds pull off before the deadline is the Joe Randa deal, I'll give O'Brien an F for job security.

The Nationals thought they had a trade with the Devil Rays for Julio Lugo. Unfortunately, by the time the team found out what type of financial deal they could make, Chuck Lamar had moved on, though it's unclear what the Rays have moved on to. Lugo, Aubrey Huff and Danys Baez are all in play. Don't think that trades made will mean a call for Delmon Young or B.J. Upton. It's still "wait til next year" in Tampa, again.

Two names that have recently started grinding through the mill: Chad Billingsley and Corey Patterson.

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