A few links the night before all Hot Stove hell breaks loose…
- Dejan Kovacevic of The Pittsburgh Post Gazette reports that team president Frank Coonelly said the Pirates have made less than $11MM profit over the last two years, and all of that was put back into the team.
- Agent Alan Nero says that opening talks about a long-term deal for Victor Martinez "should be on the to-do list in January," according to Daniel Barbarisi and Joe McDonald of The Providence Journal.
- Ed Price of AOL FanHouse says we can add Joe Blanton to the list of pitchers available via trade. He's arbitration eligible after making $5.475MM in 2009, and the Phillies can better use that money elsewhere.
- The Diamondbacks are one of the teams that watched J.J. Putz's recent throwing session, according to FoxSports.com.
- Dylan Hernandez of The LA Times takes a look at five issues facing the Dodgers heading into the Winter Meetings.
- The Mariners are among the teams looking to land a catcher this week, says Jon Paul Morosi of FoxSports.com.
- Adam Rubin of The NY Daily News rounds up Omar Minaya's brief meeting with the press upon arriving in Indianapolis for the Winter Meetings.
- Carl Pavano's agent says his client is undecided about whether to accept arbitration, according to FoxSports.com's Ken Rosenthal.
- Peter Abraham of The Boston Globe says the Red Sox, Angels, Mariners, and maybe the Mets represent the market for Jason Bay.
- MLB.com's Carrie Muskat spoke to a Rangers' official who said the team would be willing to bring Milton Bradley back, however they're not sure they want to deal with "that headache" again.
- Jon Heyman of SI.com tweets that the Angels will compete with the Mariners for John Lackey and Jason Bay, but they won't bid $100MM.
- Omar Minaya suggests that trades are more likely than free agent signings for the Mets, according to Ben Shpigel of The NY Times.
- Free agent Jamey Carroll says the "door hasn't been closed" on a return to Cleveland, according to Paul Hoynes of The Cleveland Plain Dealer.
- Roger Mooney of The Tampa Tribune says the Rays will be looking to make more under-the-radar moves this year.
- Andy Martino of The Philadelphia Inquirer writes about a perfect storm scenario that could send Roy Halladay to the Phillies.
- LaVelle E. Neal III of The Star Tribune hears that Joe Mauer's agent might not attend the Winter Meetings because of all the attention that will paid to his client's possible free agency.
- Tyler Hissey previewed the Orioles' offseason.