The Angels, who seriously considered dealing for Manny last winter, are scheduled to meet with the Sox tonight, but their understanding is that the Sox want either closer Francisco Rodriguez or Scot Shields. Rodriguez isn't going anywhere, and the Angels have consistently maintained they have little interest in moving Shields, either.
The Sox also asked about SS Orlando Cabrera, and the Angels' prized two young starters, Ervin Santana and Jered Weaver. Make the Angels a long shot in this one.
The Giants also had a meeting scheduled with the Sox, and according to the lobby buzz, they wonder how serious the Sox are in wanting to move him.
The rumor sweeping the lobby is that the Washington Nationals might be part of a three-way with the Sox and Giants, offering closer Chad Cordero as part of the deal, with a pitcher like Noah Lowry headed toward D.C. Seattle also appears to be in the picture -- the Mariners have two top bullpen arms in closer J.J. Putz and setup man Rafael Soriano, who has closer stuff.
This and that: Terry Francona and new pitching coach John Farrell met today with Florida residents Mike Timlin and Tim Wakefield. The club blames Timlin's subpar performance last season on a weak shoulder, which they link to the WBC. GM Theo Epstein said Timlin is on a new strengthening program that has proven beneficial and talks of Timlin returning in his 8th-inning role.
J.D. Drew evidently remains in a holding pattern. Theo says he wants to sift through all the trade proposals for Manny by Wednesday midnight -- that's a SOFT deadline -- then turn his attention elsewhere.