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Royals: Bradley deal not on radar

Royals: Bradley deal not on radar

INDIANAPOLIS -- Pudge Rodriguez is apparently out of the Royals' picture, but the image of Milton Bradley keeps appearing in the murky background.

The latest whisper from the Winter Meetings rumor mill on Tuesday morning was a supposed discussion of a Jose Guillen-for-Milton Bradley swap by the Royals with the Chicago Cubs, who are anxious to unload Bradley.

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MLB.com, however, learned from a well-placed source that there was no such talk and that the Royals had no intention of making such a deal. Guillen is coming up on the final year of a $12 million annual contract with the Royals, and Bradley has two years left with the Cubs for a total $21 million.

In fact, Royals general manager Dayton Moore, in a Tuesday morning radio interview, commented that Bradley did not "fit in our radar right now."

Guillen, coming off a subpar year hampered by leg injuries, apparently is not attracting much interest at these Meetings. If he has a good start next season in his "walk year," he might spark a lot of interest from contending teams as the July 31 Trade Deadline approaches.

Rodriguez reportedly agreed to a two-year, $6 million deal with the Nationals late Monday night.

It was speculated that his suitors might include the Royals, who are looking for a catcher after the departure of free agent Miguel Olivo.

"You guys said we had interest in [Rodriguez] -- the media and everything," Moore said. "I don't know that I ever said we had interest in him. But, like I said, catching is an area of focus for us. Internally, we have [John] Buck and [Brayan] Pena, and I don't know what to say about it."

The names of Jason Kendall and Rod Barajas, both free agent catchers, surfaced in connection with the Royals, but Moore wasn't commenting on that. He insisted the Royals' search is wide-spread.

"Every free-agent catcher is on our board," Moore said.

Kendall and Barajas also were attracting the attention of the Rangers, who are searching for a catcher with Rodriguez leaving and Jarrod Saltalamacchia ailing.

Barajas was a .226 hitter for Toronto but banged 19 homers with 71 RBIs. Kendall batted .241 with two homers, 43 RBIs for Milwaukee.

Moore said the Royals would prefer to make their catching move their first priority of these meetings. That would make a decision easier on whether or not to offer catcher John Buck a 2010 contract by Saturday's tender deadline.

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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