*Angels manager Mike Scioscia during his interview session in the press room on Wednesday hinted strongly that his club has backed off strongly in its pursuit of Jason Bay, saying that certain factors "might not make Jason a fit for our club." Scioscia talked about Gary Matthews, Jr. possibly being in the rotation as well as a possible pursuit of Hideki Matsui if he can physically play the outfield.
With regard to John Lackey, he said that the Angels would love to have him back, but in describing Lackey he stopped short of calling him a No. 1 starter and said "you can never have too much pitching."
Scioscia was then asked if Lackey didn't sign there are other No. 1 starter possibilities out there. Would the Angels pursue any of them.
Scioscia very facetiously returned a mock-innocent glance at the questioner and asked: "There are options out there?" Then he turned back and gave an answer wherein he claimed that even without Lackey he felt the rotation of Saunders, Weaver, Santana and Kazmir was as good as any rotation in baseball. Since that statement is so ridiculous, it sounds like Scioscia is confident and knows that he will never have to test that theory in the real world.
But the biggest thing is that it sounded like the Angels are stepping away from the Bay watch. That would leave them the money they need to pursue a No. 1 starter instead of Lackey. Scioscia also stopped short of giving the opening day third base job to Brandon Wood which means he is not untouchable. Scioscia said simply that, "Arte (Moreno) is committed to bringing us a championship."
*Sources indicate that, as expected, the Yankees and Andy Pettitte have reached agreement on a one-year deal for $10.75 million. That may impact their pursuit of Halladay, but Pettitte is more of a No. 4 starter at this stage of his career which leaves room at the top for Halladay. With the Yankees don't even ask if they can afford it.