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MLB Trade Rumors: Angels Interested In Rays Pitcher James Shields

The Los Angeles Angels are considering a deal to improve their starting rotation before the July 31 trade deadline. The club has been linked to various pitchers, seemingly everyone from Zack Greinke to James Shields. They were once also linked to Cole Hamels of the Phillies, but he appears likely to stay in Philadelphia with a new contract extension in the works.

Shields, 30, is a very talented pitcher and has held his own against the offensive juggernauts in the American League East. As the Tampa Bay Rays try and decide whether or not they'll be sellers in the next week, Shields will be a popular name on the rumor mill.

Here is Tim Kurkjian of ESPN with the latest.

The Los Angeles Angels and the Tampa Bay Rays are heavily involved in significant trade talks, but earlier discussions involving pitcher James Shields fizzled out, a source said Tuesday.

The Angels continue to look for pitching help before next week's trade deadline, while the Rays continue to search for starting catching help, the source said.

A potential deal is complicated, the source said, because money is involved and there is a chance that Angels pitcher Ervin Santana could also be included.

While the updated story from Kurkjian suggests the talks for Shields are dead, other sources in the industry believe talks will remain fluid throughout the week. Just about every club in baseball is in the midst of evaluating their current assets (and what they may fetch through a trade) and the Rays are never afraid to acquire a couple of young players for proven talent.

Stay tuned for continued updates throughout the week. The Angels are expected to be busy.

For more on all-things Angels baseball, check out Halos Heaven.