LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - Well, well, look who's entered the Cliff Lee sweepstakes - those cash-slingin' Nationals.
OK, general manager Mike Rizzo admits they probably won't get him. But the fact the Nationals are even talking to Lee's agent signals a shift at these winter meetings. As in, this session isn't just for the Yankees, Red Sox and baseball's other big spenders.
The Arizona Diamondbacks kept busy yesterday, giving free-agent reliever J.J. Putz a $10 million, 2-year deal. Colorado filled a need by getting 2010 All-Star infielder Ty Wigginton and Pittsburgh reached a 2-year contract with pitcher Kevin Correia.
The Rockies and Wigginton, 33, reached agreement on a 2-year contract worth $8 million, a person familiar with the deal told the Associated Press.
Carl Crawford and Lee still topped the free-agent market. Hideki Matsui also was in play and Oakland was interested. Former AL Cy Young Award winner Zack Greinke was said to be available for any team willing to meet Kansas City's steep price.
Rockies manager Jim Tracy gave the meetings a jolt when he collapsed about 1 a.m. yesterday near a bank of elevators. Carried out of the hotel on a stretcher, he was hospitalized because of mild arrhythmia. The 2009 NL Manager of the Year was released and headed back to his Florida home with his family.
New Milwaukee manager Ron Roenicke, meanwhile, is looking forward to writing slugger Prince Fielder's name on his first lineup card. There has been speculation the Brewers might try to trade their first baseman, who can be a free agent at this time next year.