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More stuff on Zito, Manny, Soriano, et al

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A lot of rumors out there today, with the g.m. meetings coming up.

The S-T has several tidbits today, with the big news being that the Rangers have "zeroed in" on Barry Zito on the trade market. I still don't think that the Rangers are going to be legitimate players for Zito - the S-T says that they could offer Kevin Mench and Ian Kinsler, which isn't going to get a deal done, while the San Francisco Chronicle is reporting that the Rangers have offered Mench for Zito.

I just can't see Beane trading Zito within the division, without getting a ridiculous amount in return for him, although the S-T quotes a Rangers official as saying that he thought reports that Beane wouldn't trade Zito within the division are "inaccurate."

The Boston Globe is reporting that the Rangers are interested in a Soriano-for-Manny Ramirez deal, something that I'd like to see the Rangers pursue. The S-T article, though, says that the Rangers are denying that they've contacted the BoSox about Ramirez.

The S-T also says that the Dodgers are "strong suitors" for Soriano, which doesn't make much sense unless they are going to either move Jeff Kent back to first base, or trade Kent. Phil Rogers says that the Angels are reportedly interested in Soriano, although it is unknown whether the Rangers would trade him within the division. Personally, given the quality prospects the Angels have in their system, I'd be thrilled if Anaheim emerged as a serious contender for Soriano.

On the Paul Byrd front, the L.A. Daily News says that the Rangers, Indians and Orioles have all made offers, while the Cleveland Plain Dealer says that Byrd is expected to make a decision before Monday, and identifies Kenny Rogers as a possible target of the Indians if they don't get Byrd.

The New York Daily News is also reporting the Nix/Pierre discussions, saying that the Rangers are "down on" Laynce Nix and want to replace him with a "speedster" like Pierre. As I've said before, I don't see Juan Pierre as anything special, and would rather see the Rangers try to get Milton Bradley instead of Pierre.