A.J. Burnett is listening to all offers from National League teams but two logical suitors are now looked at as longshots.
CSNPhilly reports, the Phillies a team Pirates officials believed would offer Burnett upwards of $12 million per season, are likely to stand point. “I don’t suspect we’ll be doing anything. I think we’ve got what we’ve got,” Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr said. “I suspect we’ll go into the season with what we’ve got – or at least spring training with what we’ve got. We’re always looking, always trolling. I know there are guys out there, but I don’t suspect us having anything major coming through.”
Meanwhile, Burnett is said to be lukewarm about joining the Baltimore Orioles because he only wants to play in the National League.
The Diamondbacks and Dodgers have been two West Coast teams to check in on Burnett.
As expected, there hasn’t been a very strong market for Burnett because of the surplus of quality starters still out there and Burnett limiting himself to only wanting to play in the National League.
Have the Pirates played their cards right by offering Burnett just a deal south of $10 million? We’ll soon find out.
One sleeper that could emerge for Burnett is the Washington Nationals.
MLB Insider Jon Heyman speculates on the possibility:
“If someone’s going to steal A.J. Burnett away from his beloved Pirates, could it be the Washington Nationals? Speculation is going around baseball circles that the Nats could consider a late play for the talented Burnett at a time some other would-be contenders seem to be fading away.
The Pirates rightly should have always been considered the favorite to land Burnett, considering how well that marriage has worked since he came over from New York. And with chances for the Orioles and Phillies reportedly diminishing, the Nats are seen as a team that could emerge as a possibility.