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Trade talk (cont.)

Posted: Tuesday July 31, 2007 1:43AM; Updated: Tuesday July 31, 2007 1:47PM
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Garland's name keeps popping up

The Dodgers and Mets are among the teams that have inquired about top White Sox starter Jon Garland, who's by far the best starting pitcher to be mentioned at this deadline. However, Chicago will expect premium young players in return, exactly the sort of players that teams are afraid to trade, so a deal for Garland remains a long shot. Although with aggressive GM Ken Williams, who will trade Dye, nothing should be ruled out. He isn't opposed to a makeover.

Both the Dodgers and Mets have talented young players but don't appear anxious to deal them. The Dodgers have pitchers Chad Billingsley and Jon Meloan, outfielders Andre Ethier and Matt Kemp and third baseman Andy LaRoche, among others. The Mets have outfielders Gomez, Fernando Martinez and Lastings Milledge, and pitchers Mike Pelfrey and Phil Humber.

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The Mets say they expect Pedro Martinez to come back to help them. They also say all three of their coveted outfielders are untouchable.

Talks with the Dodgers may have stalled, as L.A. is reportedly engaging the A's about Joe Blanton, who has also drawn interest from a few other teams. Blanton isn't nearly as accomplished as Garland, but he's a lot cheaper since he's only eligible for salary arbitration starting next season.

The Diamondbacks made a brief pass at Garland but that went nowhere.

Around the majors

• After losing out on Teixeira, the Angels are not being very aggressive about either Adam Dunn or Dye, possibly because they believe that Juan Rivera will come back and help them. Also, they're just not the aggressive type.

• Their offer for Teixeira wasn't bad, though: Casey Kotchman and Joe Saunders make a nice package. But Texas couldn't resist what Atlanta surrendered: switch-hitting catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia, shortstop Elvis Andrus, pitcher Neftali Feliz and a player to be named. That fourth player could be left-handed pitcher Matt Harrison if his iffy shoulder checks out.

• People around the game believe that once the Teixeira deal gets final approval (that should come Tuesday), the Braves will complete their deal to get Octavio Dotel. The Kansas City Star said the Braves were planning to ship pitcher Kyle Davies to the Royals for Dotel.

Dan Wheeler just got to Tampa Bay, but already his name is coming up in trade talks. The Indians have inquired about both him and Al Reyes, who did a splendid job as the Devil Rays closer earlier this year.

• The Mets are considering a deal to add Jeff Conine for their bench even though they already strengthened their reserve corps by demoting Ruben Gotay, who lost his second-base job when the club acquired Luis Castillo from the Twins.

Hank Aaron finally commented on Barry Bonds, saying, "I am making a comment by not making a comment.'' That is the classy way of saying he wishes Bonds nothing but the worst.

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