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A look inside how the Orioles think


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If anything, one club source said, the Orioles are even more reticent to trade top pitching prospect Hayden Penn, relievers Jorge Julio and Steve Kline and outfielder Admin Bigbie because they don't believe Burnett will sign a contract extension.


The source said the team, including owner Peter Angelos, has cooled on the idea of dealing for the 28-year-old Burnett because he is expected to file for free agency at season's end - making him a two-month rental.


And there are those within the organization who wonder if Burnett, who has never won more than 12 games in a season, would make the transition to the American League quickly enough to lead the Orioles to a postseason berth.


To further hamstring the proposed deal with Florida, the Orioles have all but decided they don't want to acquire Florida third baseman Mike Lowell, even if half of the $21 million owed to him through 2007 is picked up by the Marlins or another team.


If Lowell and Penn, a 20-year-old right-hander considered the Orioles' best minor league pitcher, were removed from the deal, the Orioles would be more apt to trade Julio and others for Burnett, the source said.


Since the Orioles are not the only team interested in Burnett, though, it's unlikely the Marlins would jump at such an offer.


The source refused to pronounce the Florida deal dead, but said it was "highly unlikely" that the trade will happen if it involved Lowell or Penn.



You can't get something for nothing

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