11/12 Afternoon Roundup

The second day of the General Manager Meetings in Orlando got off to a quick start, as the Phillies and outfielder Marlon Byrd agreed a two-year, $16-million deal. Byrd, 36, hit .291/.336/.518 last season with the Mets and Pirates.

He was Philadelphia’s 10th-round pick in the 1999 Draft and spent his first 3 1/2 years in the organization.

Outside of the Byrd news, everything else was speculation and rumor. Here’s a glimpse of what’s being said:

  • CBSSports’ Jon Heyman reports that multiple teams are interested in Astros catcher Jason Castro, who hit .276/.350/.485 with 18 home runs last season. Our Brian McTaggart downplays the likelihood of a Castro trade here, however.
  • Free-agent catcher A.J. Pierzynski is garnering much interest. Heyman reports the Twins — who drafted Pierzynski in the third round of the ’94 Draft — are interested in a reunion, while ESPN’s Jason Stark reports (on Twitter) that the Phillies might also be interested if they don’t retain Carlos Ruiz.
  • Speaking of Ruiz, the Rockies offered him a two-year, $15-million contract with a buyout, according to The Denver Post’s Troy Renck. Within that tweet, Renck says the Rockies won’t go up to $20 million for Ruiz, who turns 35 in January.
  • The Yankees’ reported interest in free-agent outfielder Carlos Beltran is legit, our Bryan Hoch hears (Twitter).
  • Nick Cafardo tweets that teams are asking the Blue Jays about Jose Bautista.

– Cash Kruth

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