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Rounding Third: A lot of buzz, but not much sting at Winter Meetings

1:03 PM, Dec 11, 2013   |    comments
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(SportsNetwork.com) - You had to expect things would be quiet at Major League Baseball's Winter Meetings given the flurry of activity that took place last week.

In reality, though, these meetings are rarely action packed. This year it just seems to be extra slow considering the bigger names like Robinson Cano, Jacoby Ellsbury and Carlos Beltran have already found new homes.

Sure there are years when all the big free agents find a new home at these meetings, like in Dallas, Texas two years ago, when Albert Pujols, Jose Reyes, C.J. Wilson, Heath Bell and others signed, but more often than not the bulk of the action at this event surrounds second- and third-tier players.

Only this year, those players seem to have signed already too.

And as much as we'd like these meetings to be like a fantasy league with trades and big name players switching teams, that just isn't the case.

How quiet have these meetings been?

Well, unless something drastic happens in the next 48 hours, Mark Trumbo going from Anaheim to Arizona as part of a three-team deal with the Chicago White Sox will be the biggest news to come out of Lake Buena Vista, Florida.

Trumbo is a nice player and will help the Diamondbacks, who were in on every available outfielder this offseason, as they try to fill the void left by Justin Upton last year.

And the price for Trumbo was pretty high, considering they had to send highly- regarded lefty Tyler Skaggs in the deal. The Angels actually made out pretty well in the deal, landing not only Skaggs, but also picking up fellow southpaw Hector Santiago from the White Sox.

Now either Skaggs or Santiago or both will be counted on to win now for the pitching-strapped Angels, who with that roster are certainly not in a rebuilding mode.

Maybe it's not so surprising that the final bounty for Trumbo was so lofty considering that Ellsbury went for $153 million and now it appears as if Shin- Soo Choo could walk away with seven years and $140 million.

Shin-Soo Choo, a $140 million player?

One of the better rumors to come out of Disney this week has been the Philadelphia Phillies putting not only closer Jonathan Papelbon on the market, but also lefty starters Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels.

And to top it off Philadelphia doesn't intend to eat any salary in any potential deal.

Well, that right off the bat eliminates three-quarters of the league. But one team it doesn't eliminate are the Angels, who have the financial resources to take on the remaining $62.5 million on Lee's deal and the nearly $119 left on Hamels' contract.

As highly-touted as Skaggs and Santiago are they probably aren't ready to be a big part of a team that wants to contend for a playoff spot next season. Maybe flipping one or both of them for a Lee or Hamels makes some sense.

This is what happens at these meetings, especially when it's slow. Endless speculation.

The Sports Network

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