Dodgers reportedly interested in Pirates starter Paul Maholm

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Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports reported yesterday that the Dodgers “have been very aggressive in their pursuit of pitching” and today Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette quotes “an industry source” who says they’re interested in Pirates left-hander Paul Maholm.
General manager Neal Huntington indicated previously that the Pirates don’t plan to be very active at the trading deadline and Maholm is under contract for $5.75 million next season with a $9.75 million option or $750,000 buyout for 2012.
His win totals are underwhelming in large part because his teammates are always so horrible, but Maholm has a 4.05 ERA in 515 inning during the past three seasons and is still just 28 years old.

Rays trade Jake Odorizzi to Twins

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The Rays have traded right-hander Jake Odorizzi to the Twins, per team announcements on Saturday evening. The Twins will receive minor league shortstop Jermaine Palacios in the deal. Despite previous speculation, recently-DFA’d outfielder Corey Dickerson was not included in the trade.

With Odorizzi, the Twins finally have the front-end starter they’ve been seeking all winter. It’s a bargain deal as well, as the 27-year-old righty is under contract through 2019 and didn’t require the club to part with any of their top-shelf prospects in the trade. Odorizzi will be looking to stage a comeback in 2018 after a dismal performance with the Rays last year, during which he eked out a career-worst 4.14 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 through 143 1/3 innings.

Palacios, 21, ranked no. 27 in the Twins’ system last season. He split his year between Single-A Cedar Rapids and High-A Fort Myers, raking a combined .296/.333/.454 with 13 home runs and 20 stolen bases in 539 plate appearances. He’s expected to continue developing at shortstop, though he’s also seen limited time at second and third base during his four-year career in the minors.