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Dodgers asking about Zack Greinke, their top free-agent target

By Danny Knobler | Baseball Insider

The Dodgers have been calling around and gathering information on Zack Greinke, which shouldn't come as a surprise but should concern any and all other teams interested in signing the top free agent starter on this winter's market.

Greinke is the Dodgers' top choice on the free agent market, according to sources, followed closely by Anibal Sanchez. The Dodgers have also shown interest in Hiroki Kuroda, but it's believed that he is more likely to either stay with the Yankees or return to his native Japan.

The Greinke market could well pit the Dodgers against their Southern California rivals, the Angels, although the Rangers and possibly other teams could also get involved in the bidding. The Angels have made retaining Greinke their top priority, and it's easy to believe that owner Arte Moreno will do all that he can to keep Greinke away from his local rivals and his division rivals.

It's also easy to believe that it won't be enough, because under their new ownership the Dodgers have become the biggest and freest spenders in the game. Rival executives still can't believe the $22.5 million (over three years) that they committed to Brandon League.

The Dodgers also had the winning bid of $25,737,737 for Korean pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu, who they are now negotiating to sign.

Ryu would go into the Dodgers' rotation, but they'd still like to sign at least one more starter to slot in behind ace Clayton Kershaw.

Greinke was 15-5 with a 3.48 ERA in 34 starts split between the Brewers and Angels. Many scouts no longer regard him as a true No. 1, but most would agree that he's the best pitcher available as a free agent this winter.

Sanchez upped his value with his strong postseason performance for the Tigers, who would like to keep him. The Tigers were always concerned that they would lose out if any team decided to bid crazy money for Sanchez, and if the Dodgers get seriously involved, there's every chance that could happen.

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