The Mariners have been linked to Josh Hamilton in the past week and Buster Olney of ESPN.com won't rule them out of the hunt. Olney notes that it only takes one aggressive, desperate team to alter a player's market and the M's could be the team that comes out with the winning bid. Here's more from Olney..
- The Diamondbacks believe that the Rays are the second-best possible fit for a trade, behind the Rangers. The Rangers don't want to give up Elvis Andrus or Jurickson Profar and Justin Upton would give Rays some badly needed offense in the middle of their lineup. However, Tampa Bay might have pause over the pay bump coming to Upton. He is set to earn $9.75MM in next season, $14.25MM in 2014, and $14.5 in '15. The Rays could make that work, but it would mean dedicating roughly 20% of their payroll to one player.
- The A's can comfortably wait to see if Stephen Drew winds up coming back to them for a deal. No matter who Oakland gets at the position, it won't be someone so pricey that they couldn't adjust if Drew decides to return.
- While many expect the Red Sox to deal Jarrod Saltalamacchia and give an increased role to Ryan Lavarnway, some rival evaluators have serious questions about whether he can be a catcher at the major league level. One remarked that he has never seen a catcher with actions as slow as Lavarnway with another noting that "everything has to be perfect" for him to throw a runner out.