From the USA Today, which adds a new wrinkle to the hot-stove nomenclature:
The Texas Rangers believe they are out out of the bidding for free-agent slugger Prince Fielder, according to a person with knowledge of the talks, but not authorized to speak publicly because of the ongoing negotiations.
Look, USA Today, we're all baseball fans here. You don't need to spell out a PWKOTTBNATSPBOTON for us. Just write "according to a PWKOTTBNATSPBOTON" and move on.
It's an open question just how interested the Rangers were in the first place. While Prince Fielder would certainly make a good lineup even better, the Rangers' interest probably had more do to with the Yu Darvish negotiations. Making the Darvish camp think that they had another way to spend $100 million was almost certainly the ultimate goal.
But with Darvish secured, the Rangers likely still sniffed around to see if Fielder was interested in a one-year deal at a hitter's paradise, where he could enter the next offseason with even shinier numbers than he currently has. As is, the Rangers are supposedly out.
That leaves the Nationals as the likely front-runners, with the Orioles also interested. There are some rumblings that the Dodgers could be the question-mark bedecked mystery team lurking in the bushes, and there would be a precedent for a new owner signing a big-ticket deal before the sale is complete -- it's how the Giants got Barry Bonds with a new ownership group after the '92 season. But Ken Rosenthal writes that the Fielder derby is "nearing its conclusion," which isn't something that could be written about the Dodgers' ownership situation, so that seems like a longshot.