Dan Haren, Josh Hamilton developments could help Dodgers' pursuit of Zack Greinke

USA Today Sports

The early part of the second day of baseball's winter meetings hasn't been too eventful, but news regarding Dan Haren and Josh Hamilton could help the Dodgers land starting pitcher Zack Greinke.

Day two of the winter meetings in Nashville has been relatively quiet so far, especially for the Dodgers. Outside of the Dodgers being one of five teams interested in relief pitcher Mark Lowe, as reported by Jon Morosi of Fox Sports, the main Dodgers-related speculation of the day has been Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reporting that the club is looking for a shortstop or third baseman to pair with Hanley Ramirez, and seeming to seek an "all-star at all positions."

But a pair of developments could in fact help the Dodgers in their pursuit of Zack Greinke. On Tuesday morning, the Nationals signed Dan Haren, formerly of the Angels, to a one-year, $13 million contract. The deal could prove highly rewarding for the Nats if Haren is healthy, but that is a large if. But more importantly, it fills their starting rotation and likely knocks them out of the Greinke sweepstakes.

The other development is that the Rangers and Josh Hamilton are "making progress" toward a deal, per Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, likely to be four years. Texas has been thought to be the Dodgers' chief competitor for Greinke, and in theory spending big money to keep Hamilton could hamper the Rangers' ability to spend on Greinke.

Which could mean Greinke's main suitors are in southern California, with the Dodgers and Angels fighting it out. Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com characterized the Angels as "lying in the weeds" for Greinke, while Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times said Greinke was the Angels' first choice at starting pitcher.

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