12:41pm: Marc Topkin heard chatter that the Rays and Cardinals are talking. Perhaps Ankiel or Ludwick could interest Tampa Bay.
Meanwhile Scott Lauber says the Cards may be interested in Madson as a potential closer.
8:36am: Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the Cardinals remain focused on short-term deals for starters. Possible names include Oliver Perez, Andy Pettitte, Brad Penny, and Randy Wolf. They’ll meet with Wolf’s agent by tomorrow afternoon.
John Mozeliak now seems open to a two or three-year deal for a reliever. He could trade an outfielder like Ryan Ludwick for a top guy, but shot down the idea of Ryan Madson. Makes no sense, Madson is only under team control for one more year. Schumaker and Chris Duncan are trade bait for Mozeliak.
8:28am: Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun says the Cards have interest in Blue Jays lefty Scott Downs. Downs is owed $7.75MM over the next two seasons.
8:01am: We know the Cardinals chatted with the Braves about Mike Gonzalez and Blaine Boyer. Gerry Fraley says they also had trade talks with the Phillies, hoping to trade an outfielder for a reliever. Rick Ankiel and Skip Schumaker are apparently popular with other teams.