MLB trade rumor roundup: Rios interest heats up, Rangers aggressively seeking bat, Soriano nearing deal?

"Please, someone get me out of here!" - Kyle Rivas

The best of Wednesday's trade deadline dirt.

Rangers, Royals targeting Rios

White Sox outfielder Alex Rios isn't having the greatest year at the plate, but that doesn't seem to be keeping teams from discussing a potential trade for the veteran. The Texas Rangers, who have gotten poor production from David Murphy and may soon lose Nelson Cruz to a PED suspension, are in trade discussions with the ChiSox about Rios. The Kansas City Royals have also joined the Rios sweepstakes in their hunt for a right fielder. (If only they had a powerful prospect ready to take over the spot...) Like fellow Chicago trade piece Alfonso Soriano, Rios is owed quite a bit of money this season and the next, so teams may be hesitant to offer a lot for the outfielder. In fact, last week it was reported that the Chicago front office was "extremely disappointed" with the offers they had received to that point. The Pirates, Diamondbacks and Red Sox are also believed to be looking at Rios.

Rangers step up offense hunt

Nolan Ryan and company are not just looking at Rios, but are in an "aggressive" search for a bat that could help them should they lose Nelson Cruz to a drug suspension. In addition to Rios, Giants outfielder Hunter Pence and Mariners first baseman/designated hitter Kendrys Morales are being targeted in trade talks by GM Jon Daniels. Also on the club's radar is Mets outfielder Marlon Byrd, whose resurgence this season has taken everybody by surprise. While Rios seems a lock to go somewhere by the deadline, the availability of guys like Morales, Pence, and Byrd is more uncertain.

Soriano nearing New York reunion

The Yankees are still just "one of several teams" discussing an Alfonso Soriano trade with the Cubs, but for all intents and purposes it appears that New York is leading the pack. Soriano himself made that point clear while speaking to a reporter on Wednesday, saying that the Yankees rumor was the "most real," and that while "not 100%," he thinks that a deal is "close." The slugger met with club president Theo Epstein earlier in the day to give the front office a list of teams he would waive his no-trade clause for, and it is believed that the Yankees are right at the top of that list. Soriano wouldn't be a huge upgrade in left for the Bombers, but he'd certainly give them a bit more pop that they've gotten at the position thus far this year.

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