In an MLB.com chat, Pirates president Frank Coonelly confirmed the Bucs' interest in Rick Ankiel.
High interest in Loe
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Wednesday that right-hander Kameron Loe, the former Texas Rangers hurler who pitched in Japan last year, is garnering interest from the Pirates, Dodgers, Braves and A's.
Mariners gunning hard for Harden
FOXSports.com wrote that Seattle is joining the Red Sox as one of the teams "showing strong interest" in starter Rich Harden, who seems like a good fit for the Pacific Northwest considering he grew up in nearby British Columbia.
The New York Post reports that there's a "strong possibility" that Pat Burrell of the Rays and Milton Bradley of the Cubs will be swapped for each other in what would be a trade of big 2009 free-agent signings that didn't work out as well as expected for their clubs.
More Halladay greetings
The latest on very available Blue Jays ace Roy Halladay includes an item from SI.com that states the Blue Jays told the Yankees that the four players they'd like to get in return are Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, Jesus Montero and Austin Jackson, though they weren't necessarily asking for all four. Meanwhile, the New York Post called the Yankees "bystanders rather than aggressive pursuers" in the Halladay sweepstakes and that the Jays "have yet to divulge exactly what it would take to land Halladay."
Boston and the in(field) crowd
The Red Sox have kicked the tires on a lot of infielders and they're keeping at it, according to the Boston Herald, which reported that you can add Mark DeRosa and Bobby Crosby to the mix of names the team has been linked to, along with Adam Kennedy, Marco Scutaro and Adam Everett. How this affects Dustin Pedroia's desire to play shortstop remains to be seen.
Wagner a Brave soul
The Hot Stove got a little more heat when flame-throwing lefty closer Billy Wagner and Atlanta agreed to a one-year deal, MLB.com's Mark Bowman reported Wednesday morning. The contract for the 38-year-old veteran, which the Braves confirmed will pay him $7 million in 2010, includes a vesting option for the 2011 season.
Braves seeking more relief
Now that they have their closer, the Braves are looking for a setup man, and Bowman writes that they're targeting Octavio Dotel, Fernando Rodney and Takashi Saito.
Lone Star Myers, Putz?
Meanwhile, veteran starter and reliever Brett Myers, formerly of the Phillies, is attracting interest from both Texas teams, the Astros and Rangers, according to ESPN.com, which projects Myers as a reliever if he signs with Texas. The Rangers also might take an incentive-laden flyer on J.J. Putz, according to the Web site, but they might be competing with the Phillies, Astros and Pirates for the big right-hander.
Dowry for Lowry
A report out of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has the Bucs interested in left-hander Noah Lowry, the former Giants starter who hasn't thrown a big league pitch since 2007 because of forearm, neck and shoulder problems. The Denver Post has already reported that the Rockies are inquiring about Lowry, too. ESPN.com takes it a few steps further, naming the Padres, A's, Mariners and Reds as interested.
According to FOXSports.com, Mets outfielder Angel Pagan is garnering plenty of inquiries in trade talks, although nothing appears to be imminent. One team mentioned as a potential suitor is the Kansas City Royals, although a source told FOX that the Mets don't want outfielder Jose Guillen, whom the Royals would possibly dangle in a Pagan deal. FOX mentioned the Cubs, Rangers and White Sox as possible destinations for Pagan, who might be viewed by some teams as a starting center fielder.
Hot off the Grilli
Another reliever signed a deal Wednesday, with right-hander Jason Grilli agreeing to a Minor League contract with the Cleveland Indians. Grilli, 33, pitched for the Rockies and Rangers last year. "I just like the fit," Grilli told MLB.com by phone Wednesday afternoon. "I love the stadium. The division is something I'm very familiar with as far as travel and the players. There were just more positives than negatives."
According to SI.com, the Giants, Mets, and Royals have interest in veteran catcher Ivan Rodriguez, who is expected to turn down the Rangers' offer of arbitration. The Web site wrote that the Rangers were in on backstop Brian Schneider before Schneider signed with the Phillies.
A Wolf reunion in Philly?
Former Phillies lefty Randy Wolf could return to his old team, according to SI.com, which also named the Mets and Brewers as potential suitors. Meanwhile, Wolf told the Los Angeles Times that he wouldn't rule out returning to the Dodgers next year. "I always wanted to play for the Dodgers," he told the paper. "My teammates are great."
Seattle on the Hudson
The Seattle Times reports that the Mariners also are interested in Gold Glove free-agent second baseman Orlando Hudson, who was not offered arbitration by the Dodgers.
Rolling the Dye
The Chicago Sun-Times writes that the Rangers are interested in outfielder Jermaine Dye as a designated hitter, but that Dye might rather sign somewhere where he can play outfield -- possibly Boston, St. Louis or San Francisco.
X marks the San Francisco spot?
MLB.com's Chris Haft writes that outfielder Xavier Nady might be a good fit for the Giants since Nady played for San Francisco skipper Bruce Bochy when the two were in San Diego.
Erik and Escobar
And ESPNBoston.com reports that the Red Sox are interested in injury-rebounding hurlers Erik Bedard and Kelvim Escobar, with the latter's agent, Peter Greenberg, telling the Web site that the Sox are "at or near the top of" Escobar's preferred teams.
Doug Miller is a national writer for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.