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Rollins too pricey for A's; Drew, Yunel more likely options

By Danny Knobler | Baseball Insider

The A's have talked to the Phillies about Jimmy Rollins, but a deal to bring the shortstop back to his hometown is very unlikely, because the A's consider his salary too expensive.

Stephen Drew of the Diamondbacks and Yunel Escobar of the Blue Jays appear to be more likely possibilities for the surprising A's, who would like to give their offense a boost as they make an unlikely run at a playoff spot.

Rollins signed a three-year, $33 million deal to return to the Phillies last winter, but he hasn't had a good year. The Phillies' asking price in terms of prospects was said to be not that high, but they apparently weren't willing to pick up any of the salary.

The A's had strong interest in Hanley Ramirez before he went to the Dodgers, but the Marlins would have paid about half of the remaining $38 million on Ramirez's contract if that deal had gone through (instead, the Dodgers took on the entire contract).

Rollins has full no-trade protection as a player who has spent at least 10 years in the big leagues and at least five with his current team, but it's possible he would have approved a deal to Oakland. Rollins indicated earlier this year that he would have been tempted if the Giants had offered him a contract last winter (they didn't).

The Dodgers also had some interest in Rollins before they traded for Ramirez, but they're not a fit now. Ramirez is signed through 2014, and the Dodgers also have Dee Gordon returning from the disabled list later this year.

A's shortstops (primarily Cliff Pennington) have a .541 OPS, the lowest in baseball.

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