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Brewers can’t wait much longer to make offer to Fielder

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Tom Haudricourt, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
December 8, 2011
— The Milwaukee Brewers’ strange dance this off-season with free agent Prince Fielder appears to be winding down.

“I think we’re at a point now where we have to consider moving on,” general manager Doug Melvin said Wednesday.


Some wondered if the Brewers might be ready to make a bid to keep Fielder when word spread that owner Mark Attanasio participated late Tuesday night in a meeting with Fielder’s agent, Scott Boras. But Melvin said that session was not planned and resulted in no new developments.


Melvin said he was at dinner with Attanasio, who made his usual one-day visit to the winter meetings to check in on personnel discussions involving the Brewers. Boras placed a telephone call to Melvin, suggesting they chat.


“We didn’t plan the meeting,” said Melvin. “Scott just said he wanted to give us an update.


“You never really close the door on anything because you don’t know what’s going to happen. You can’t really read anything into it.”


Teams expected to show strong interest in Fielder include the Chicago Cubs, Seattle Mariners and Toronto Blue Jays.


Rollins off board

Melvin had spoken once with Dan Lozano, the agent for free-agent shortstop Jimmy Rollins, and had a second meeting in the works that Lozano canceled. That’s when the Brewers knew Rollins was headed back to Philly.


Rodriguez accepts arbitration

Francisco Rodriguez accepted Milwaukee’s offer of salary arbitration, a move that could lead the Brewers to trade the reliever to a team seeking a closer.


K-Rod, who turns 30 next month, had 23 saves in 26 chances for the New York Mets during the first half of last season, then was traded to the Brewers during the All-Star break and didn’t get another save. He served as a setup man for closer John Axford.


No deal officially was announced, but word was that Rollins and the Phillies were working on the final details of a contract. That left three everyday shortstops on the market - Rafael Furcal, Alex Gonzalez and Yuniesky Betancourt, who played last season for the Brewers.


Melvin already had talked with the agents for Furcal and Betancourt and said he would place a call to Gonzalez’s representative, who was not at the meetings.


Surgery averted: Assistant general manager Gord Ash said pitching prospect Santo Manzanillo will not need surgery on the shoulder injury he suffered last week in an auto accident in the Dominican Republic. Manzanillo was examined in Milwaukee by team physician William Raasch, and it was determined the separated shoulder and fractured scapula would heal with time and therapy.


“He will go to Phoenix to do rehab for a week, then head home,” said Ash.



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