UPDATE: Darren Oliver agrees to a deal with the Rangers

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UPDATE: T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com reports that Oliver and the Rangers have reached a deal for $3.5 million with a vesting option for 2011.  The option may be moot, however, as Oliver has said that he’ll probably retire after 2010. I suppose that all depends on how 2010 goes for him on the field.

8:00 A.M.: ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that Darren Oliver and the Rangers are near a deal. No sense on what the money is, but he says it could be done early this week.

Oliver made $3.665 million last year and posted a career-best ERA for a second straight season, finishing at 2.71 in 73 innings. He was probably the Angels’ best reliever, and if it weren’t for the fact that Anaheim has a handful of crummy contracts with other guys (Justin Speier, Brian Fuentes, Scot Sheilds) Anaheim probably would have offered him arbitration which would have effectively ensured his return.

Just a lesson that, more often than not, a handful of bad, mid-range deals can handicap a team far worse than a big bad contract can.

White Sox won’t make bid for Bryce Harper

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The White Sox won’t make a bid for free agent outfielder Bryce Harper, Bruce Levine of 670 The Score reports. Believed to be the favorites to land shortstop Manny Machado in free agency, the White Sox watched him ink a 10-year, $300 million contract with the Padres. The club is apparently content with its roster otherwise.

Harper would certainly be an upgrade in the outfield, which currently features Adam Engel, Nicky Delmonico, and Jon Jay. It will soon feature prospects Eloy Jiménez and Luis Robert.

Last season, Harper hit .249/.393/.496 with 34 hom eruns, 100 RBI, 103 runs scored, and 13 stolen bases in 695 plate appearances. He led all of baseball, drawing 130 walks. Harper is also a six-time All-Star who won the 2012 NL Rookie of the Year Award and the 2015 NL Most Valuable Player Award.

The Phillies are still believed to be the favorites to sign Harper and the club is confident it will land him, Matt Breen of the Philadelphia Daily News reports.