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MLB Winter Meetings 2012: Latest Buzz from Around the League

OAKLAND, CA - OCTOBER 03:  Ryan Dempster #46 of the Texas Rangers pitches against the Oakland Athletics at O.co Coliseum on October 3, 2012 in Oakland, California.  (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
Tim KeeneyContributor IDecember 5, 2012

The rumors aren't going to stop.

Well, I'm sure at some point they will slowly subside, but while the MLB Winter Meetings are in progress, you're sure to be bombarded with a new story precisely every 36 minutes.

And 87 percent of the time, that story will turn out to be nothing more than dust in the wind.

(Numbers may or may not have been made up.)

The point is, it can be hard to keep up with all the baseball buzz during this time of the year, so here's a quick look at the most recent stories to help get you caught up. 

 

Corey Hart Not Going Anywhere

The Milwaukee Brewers' right fielder/first baseman, who has quietly hit 87 homers over the past three seasons and slugged over .500 in each of those years, has been rumored to be a hot commodity this offseason.

David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution made it pretty clear that the Brew-Crew aren't interested in shipping him off:

#Brewers not looking to trade him, would have to be overwhelmed. RT @goldmark32: @ajcbraves Any chance braves look at Corey Hart, move to LF?

— David O'Brien (@ajcbraves) December 5, 2012

Hart has one year left on his contract. 

 

Ryan Dempster Is

Dempster was enjoying a career year with the Chicago Cubs last season to the tune of a 2.25 ERA and 1.04 WHIP. Then he was traded to Texas at the trade deadline, and things didn't go quite as well.

The 35-year-old's numbers skyrocketed to 5.09 and 1.44 as he was beat up in the American League. 

Nevertheless, several teams still clearly have plenty of interest in the free agent (via Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports):

Source: Dempster has drawn interest from #Royals and #RedSox as well as #Brewers. #Angels’ current level of interest unclear.

— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 5, 2012

The Royals, according to Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star, offered him a generous two-year deal but were unwilling to go for three, which is what Dempster is reportedly seeking. 

 

R.A. Dickey Should Probably Start Packing His Bags

The 37-year-old rediscovered his knuckleball this season and used it to earn himself a shiny Cy Young award. Blah, blah, blah, you know the story by now.

Despite the unbelievable year, Dickey, who has one more year on his contract, has quickly turned into one of the hottest names of the week.

Newsday's David Lennon tells how close a trade might truly be:

Heard #Mets sitting on number of potential trades for Dickey. If a team caves and adds a piece, deal could get done quick. Hasn't happened yet

— David Lennon (@DPLennon) December 5, 2012

 

Nick Swisher Getting Deserved Interest

For how solid of a role player Nick Swisher has always been (at least 20 home runs in eight straight seasons, an OPS+ of over 120 in four straight and a career 1.60 K/BB ratio, which is far below the 2.10 league average), he doesn't seem to get a lot of attention. 

No worry, though, as it's clear that MLB teams have noticed the play of the free agent.

According to Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports, the right fielder/first baseman is drawing interest from five teams: Cleveland Indians, Seattle Mariners, Baltimore Orioles, Boston Red Sox and San Francisco Giants. 

 

Mariners Adding Offense

It's no secret that the Seattle Mariners need help at the plate, and it's unlikely that Jason Bay (deal is "close") will completely solve those problems. 

Still, Seattle, which has been linked with several names in the past few days (see Swisher), clearly isn't done dealing. According to Jon Morosi, the M's are going after another Jason:

Jason Kubel remains a #Mariners trade target even with Jason Bay deal apparently imminent.

— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) December 5, 2012

Kubel hit 30 home runs and slugged .506 last year with the Arizona Diamondbacks and has displayed solid power (.467 slugging percentage) throughout his career. 

 

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