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News » Sources: Pettitte talks with Torre about Dodgers

Sources: Pettitte talks with Torre about Dodgers

Sources: Pettitte talks with Torre about Dodgers
Mike Mussina has retired, and the Yankees could lose Andy Pettitte, too.

Don't believe it?

Pettitte, 36, has spoken more than once with his former manager, Joe Torre, about joining the Dodgers, according to major-league sources.

And, lest anyone forget, Pettitte has a history of changing teams as a free agent when he does not feel completely wanted.

Go back to 2003, when the Yankees dragged out their negotiations with Pettitte, only to lose him to the Astros despite making a significantly higher last-minute offer.

Or, go back to 2006, when the Astros would not budge off their one-year proposal to Pettitte, only to see the Yankees grab him by offering a higher salary and the option to return for a second year.

Pettitte lacks the leverage he had in either of those negotiations. Not only is he older, but he also posted a 5.35 ERA after the All-Star Game last season.

His first choice is to stay with the Yankees. The Yankees say they want him back. But at the moment, the Yankees are focused on the top free-agent starting pitchers — CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett and Derek Lowe.

For Pettitte, the Dodgers would represent a viable alternative. So could a team such as the Cardinals, who also might want Pettitte on a one-year deal.

While Pettitte's hometown Astros are in dire need of starting pitching, owner Drayton McLane still might be peeved about the pitcher's departure in '06. Pettitte's return to Houston, one source says, is "highly unlikely."

The Astros are trying to re-sign free-agent left-hander Randy Wolf. Right-hander Ben Sheets and lefties Mike Hampton and Randy Johnson are among the other starting pitchers on their radar.

However, the team needs to shed payroll and likely will explore trades for players such as third baseman Ty Wigginton, closer Jose Valverde and shortstop Miguel Tejada, sources say.

Braves join Burnett pursuit

Add the Braves to the list of teams showing interest in free-agent right-hander A.J. Burnett.

In a perfect world, the Braves would add two top-of-the-rotation starters, then slot righty Jair Jurrjens as their No. 3.

MLB Hot Stove

The Brewers are another possibility for Fuentes, but GM Doug Melvin points out that both the Brewers and Rays won 90 games last season without a closer who earned 30 saves. Melvin might simply choose to wait out the market and load up on less expensive setup types — particularly after getting a poor return on his $10 million investment in Eric Gagne last season ...

The Mets, in search of starting pitching as well as a closer, aren't enamored with the White Sox's Javier Vazquez, who lasted only one season with the Yankees. Rays right-hander Andy Sonnanstine, a strike thrower and dogged competitor, represents a more desirable target, but the Rays are forever reluctant to trade pitching. The Mets are intent on adding players who can handle New York ...

It's a given that the Yankees will offer salary arbitration to free- agent outfielder Bobby Abreu, even if it means paying him between $18 million and $20 million to be their No. 3 hitter for one more season.

Abreu, who turns 35 on March 11, would accept the Yankees' offer only if it appeared he would not receive the multi-year deal he wanted from another club. In this economy, that's no guarantee.

Twins left fielder Delmon Young is "very, very much out there," according to one rival GM. Young, a right-handed hitter, would make particular sense for the Phillies, but the Twins will need to be careful in any trade discussions. Getting poor value for Young would only compound their mistake in acquiring him as part of a six-player trade in which they sent shortstop Jason Bartlett and right-hander Matt Garza to the Rays ...

The Diamondbacks, facing the losses of free-agent relievers Juan Cruz and Brandon Lyon, would benefit from the short-term addition of Trevor Hoffman or Kerry Wood, but lack the payroll flexibility necessary to sign either closer. Instead, the D-Backs are likely to stick with their affordable late-inning trio of Chad Qualls, Jon Rauch and Tony Pena, who will combine to make less than what Hoffman or Wood likely will command in 2009 — Hoffman for one year, Wood on a multi-year deal.

The Rockies, at least for the moment, seem content to keep third baseman Garrett Atkins and the three players they acquired in the Matt Holliday trade — left-hander Greg Smith, outfielder Carlos Gonzalez and reliever Huston Street. The team is looking for a left-handed reliever; free agent Alan Embree is one possibility.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: November 26, 2008

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