Phillies GM Pat Gillick confirmed to Comcast's Leslie Gudel that his club is no longer a finalist for Hiroshima right-hander Hiroki Kuroda. Gillick then said they've spoken with the representative for left-hander Glendon Rusch.
Rusch, 33, missed all of last season with a blood clot in his lung, but he's reportedly ready to go. In his 10-year career, which began in Kansas City, Rusch is 60-94 with a 5.01 ERA, pitching in and out of starting rotations since 2003. The deal could possibly be of the minor league invite variety. San Diego is also talking with him.
As for Kuroda, the team reportedly increased their offer today, but the offer isn't considered competitive with Seattle's four-year, $44 million proposal.
In other news from around the division, the eight-player swap between the Marlins and Tigers is complete. Young left-hander Andrew Miller and Cameron Maybin are seen as the two highest-ceiling prospects involved in the 6-for-2, and both players figure to begin on-the-job training for South Florida's American League farm club next season.
One other divisional deal to note: The Cubs dealt lefty reliever Will Ohman and utility man Omar Infante to the Braves for minor league flamethrower Jose Ascanio. I seem to recall Ohman giving Ryan Howard and the Phillies problems in the past. Rosenthal notes that Ohman, who relies on the breaking ball, was much better away from Wrigley Field, where he angered the club by claiming to have a bum shoulder, which the club denied. Lifetime, Ohman has held left-handers to a .196 average.
With one mega-deal finalized, rumors continue to swirl in the Music City, few of which involve the Phillies. A handful of national sites serve as a clearinghouse for the latest rumblings. Here are the links: [ESPN, FoxSports, SI].