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MLB Winter Meetings, Day 1: Angels Keep Options Open On Crawford, Beltre, Soriano

Day one of the baseball winter meetings is just about done, and there hasn't been much news outside of the occasional rumor. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are still expected to be in on the top two remaining free agent position players remaining, in Carl Crawford and Adrian Beltre. The Angels are keeping their options open regarding the two players.

Earlier in the day, Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times reported the Phillies expressed an interest in Juan Rivera, which makes sense. Rivera is set to make $5.25 million in 2011, and would be essentially superfluous if the Angels signed Crawford or Beltre. By jettisoning Rivera, the Angels are positioned to take either player. Right now, Torii Hunter and Peter Bourjos are expected to play right and center field, respectively. If the Angels sign Crawford, he would play in left field while Bobby Abreu is the designated hitter. If the Angels sign Beltre, they can put Abreu in left field, and use the DH spot to rotate some of their many infielders. LAAngelsInsider.com made a compelling case earlier today that the Angels need Beltre more than Crawford. At the very least, Beltre is expected to sign the shorter, less lucrative contract of the two players.

The massive Jayson Werth contract with Washington -- $126 million over seven years -- had to drive Crawford's price up, but Angels GM Tony Reagins was having none of that. Reagins said, "What other clubs do really doesn't affect how we operate. We have to conduct business the way we see fit," according to Mark Saxon of ESPN LA. The Angels are also rumored to be interested in Rafael Soriano, according to a tweet from Buster Olney of ESPN.

For more Angels winter meetings news and information, be sure to read Halos Heaven.