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December 07, 2011

Winter meetings Day 3: Something's got to give, right?

The final full day of the winter meetings is under way with most of the talk centered around the Albert Pujols Sweepstakes. Relative to that Twitter mayhem, the C.J. Wilson Sweepstakes clearly is a fight on the undercard.

Rangers brass appear to be fighting the good fight for the left-hander. But one of the cornermen at ringside -- i.e. a major-league source -- said overnight that his sense is that the Angels will ultimately land Wilson.

The Angels reportedly spent Tuesday trying to woo Wilson and Pujols, a pair of signings that would make them favorites in the AL West in 2012. It would also push their payroll into the land of the Yankees and Red Sox, and neither Pujols or Wilson would be making the most money on the team next season. Anyone think the Angels aren't really, really regretting the Vernon Wells ($63 million over the next three years) trade right now?

One thing that is key for Wilson as he makes his decision is for his next team to have a strong left side of the infield. The Angels have shortstop Erick Aybar, who won the Gold Glove for 2011. Third base in Anaheim, though, is a mystery. Mark Trumbo, who played first base as a rookie, could be moved to third, and the Angels have been linked to free agent Aramis Ramirez. Neither is Adrian Beltre.

Rangers general manager Jon Daniels was asked Tuesday what the options are if the Rangers miss out on Wilson. There are a few free agents, perhaps some trade opportunites, but high on the short list of possibilities is going with the pitchers currently on the roster.

So, the Rangers have likely asked themselves questions such as: Is Mark Buehrle really that much better than, say, Matt Harrison? Or, is a package of (pure speculation ahead) Mike Olt, Neil Ramirez and Rougned Odor worth surrendering for John Danks or Matt Garza? Of course, they've already asked and answered how far they are willing to go on Wilson (not six years).

Answers are ahead. Perhaps some of them will come today during Day 3 of the winter meetings.

-- Jeff Wilson

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