12/03/07 10:13 PM ET
Relievers, outfielders on Texas' radar
Rangers express interest in Gagne, ask about Bucs' Bay
By T.R. Sullivan / MLB.com
"More likely than not," Daniels said. "Possibly that could change, but that's likely how it's going to go."The Rangers had extensive talks with the Arizona Diamondbacks about Carlos Gonzalez, the New York Mets about Carlos Gomez and the Chicago Cubs about Felix Pie. But the Diamondbacks wanted top pitching prospect Eric Hurley, the Mets weren't interested in trading for catcher Gerald Laird and the Cubs have decided that Pie will be their center fielder. "The cost and value of a young player is so high that it's awfully tough to trade for a guy who is within one year of the big leagues or who has some big league time," Daniels said in turning the Rangers attention to the corner outfield. The Rangers are competing with the Chicago White Sox, San Diego Padres, Kansas City Royals and the Cubs for Fukudome, who is expected to leave Japan and play in the United States next year. "He's one of a couple of guys we have spoken to," Daniels said, while declining to say if the Rangers have made an offer. "We've made some offers to some free agents but I'm not going to say to who." Bay is another corner outfielder who could see a change of address this winter. Major League officials say a number of teams have asked about Bay, who hit .247 with 21 home runs and 84 RBIs in 2007 after two straight seasons with more than 30 home runs and 100 RBIs. The Pirates, who are looking for relief help, have other outfielders who are available including two potential center fielders in Nate McLouth and Chris Duffy. "We've had some conversations with them, but nothing has bubbled to the surface," Daniels said. Starting pitching, in an unusual twist of the Rangers, is not a priority at these meetings. Daniels said he is satisfied with the Rangers starting pitching depth, but that hasn't kept them from at least exploring the possibility of going after Colon, Garcia or Jennings. Colon is coming off two years of arm and shoulder injuries with the Angels after winning a Cy Young Award in 2005, Garcia is coming off shoulder surgery after winning one game for the Phillies this year and Jennings won just two games for the Astros while dealing with elbow problems. Right now the Rangers are studying their medical reports and will determine their level of interest, Daniels said. But any deal would likely be for one year and laden with incentives. There were also rumblings at the meetings that the Rangers were being asked about third baseman Hank Blalock, with the Dodgers being one of those teams. But Daniels reiterated the Rangers weren't interested in moving Blalock, who right now is their main power threat.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.