Haven't seen any discussion on the M's shortstop who is currently rehabbing for their AAA club. He was pulled in the middle of the game last night, which triggered some rumors. Here's the blog info from the Seattle paper. Interesting portion bolded.
Still, the fact Betancourt was pulled this early on leads me to believe any deal involving him might be separate from something done with Pittsburgh. One NL scout I spoke to last night told me there are a bunch of teams who, believe it or not, might get in on a Betancourt deal because there is a demand for shortstops right now.
And let's face it. There is nothing stopping the Mariners from moving Betancourt in a separate deal with another team now, perhaps to offload some salary, ahead of any potential Sanchez move, knowing they'd be taking on money. Even if nothing was to happen with the Pirates later, it's not like moving Betancourt now is a huge risk, since he's contributed little to the big league team this year.
I know this is frustrating. It is for me, too. But that's what happens this time of year. Deals are fluid things that can change hour-by-hour. Remember all the J.J. Putz-to-Detroit rumors at the winter meetings? Turns out it nearly happened in a three-way trade with Tampa Bay that wound up falling through at the 11th hour, when the M's then turned around and made the Franklin Gutierrez deal. Stuff happens. Bet you even Jack Zduriencik isn't completely sure how it's all going to turn out.
We're trying to take a stab at what's going on because it is highly unusual for a healthy player to be pulled from a game like Betancourt was with no explanation offered to the AAA manager.
So, you can either ignore the situation, relax in the sun and pretend nothing is happening. Or, you can do your job and try to figure some things out.
We're trying. And as we hear things, we'll let you in on it.