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MacPhail not ruling out any of team's potential free agents

President of baseball operations Andy MacPhail said Wednesday that it's possible the club will start talking to its free agents both before and during the exclusive two-week negotiating window the Orioles will have after the players file for free agency.

In past offseasons, the Orioles have let their free agents explore their options before starting talks with them later if there is interest, as with the case of Mark Hendrickson last year.

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"I'm not writing any of them off," MacPhail said. "I think there is a scenario where virtually every one of them could be back one way or another, but some of that is dependent on whatever options they think they have and we think we have."

The Orioles will have seven major league free agents heading into the offseason: infielders Cesar Izturis, Julio Lugo and Ty Wigginton; outfielder Corey Patterson; starting pitcher Kevin Millwood; and relievers Mark Hendrickson and Koji Uehara.

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I'm sure we'll be breaking down the chances of their return in the coming days, but if I were to handicap the odds right now, I'd say this: There is a very good chance that Izturis will return, especially if the Orioles are able to upgrade offensively at two other positions. I'd say it's about 50-50 with Wigginton and Uehara, and a little below that with Patterson and Hendrickson. There is virtually no chance that Millwood or Lugo comes back.

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