No green light

Talks between the Seattle Mariners and the Orioles about a trade involving ace pitcher Erik Bedard are at a standstill.

A source familiar with the negotiations said a potential deal is being held up on the Orioles' end and unspecified complex issues still need to be resolved for the trade to go through. One of those might be Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail getting the approval of club owner Peter Angelos.


Mariners center fielder Adam Jones, the centerpiece of Seattle's offer for Bedard, had been expected to be in Baltimore yesterday in preparation for a physical today, a club source said. However, those plans were scuttled, an indication that the deal has hit a snag or is on hold.

The Orioles don't have a physical scheduled for Jones, the source said.


"We are where we were last night," MacPhail said yesterday. "We have no agreement."

MacPhail said he didn't expect any developments for a couple of days. Asked whether an agreement could be pending, MacPhail said, "I don't know."

A source indicated the Mariners and Orioles have agreed to the general framework of the deal, which would send Jones, veteran reliever George Sherrill, 19-year-old pitching prospect Chris Tillman and one or two other prospects to the Orioles for Bedard, first reported that Angelos, who is dealing with a personal matter and is unavailable to comment, hasn't signed off on the deal. MacPhail said yesterday that he has been in regular contact with Angelos.

"Peter knows what I know and when I know it," he said.

Asked whether Angelos' support for MacPhail's plan to reshape the Orioles has changed, MacPhail said, "Not that I'm aware of."

Mariners general manager Bill Bavasi confirmed yesterday that a deal has not been reached.

"The stuff that has been reported is very, very premature," Bavasi told The Sun. "We've been searching for pitching on multiple fronts."


The speculation that a deal was complete started when Jones told a reporter in Venezuela that he was ordered by the Mariners to pull out of the winter league playoffs there because he was headed to Baltimore to get a physical.

Asked yesterday about the reasons for Jones being pulled from winter ball, Bavasi said: "Adam Jones has met his goals, so there was no point of leaving him in [winter ball]. He's been called back from the club and sent home."

MacPhail said he wasn't sure what led to the confusion.

"At this point, I don't know with certainty who told Adam what and when in Venezuela," MacPhail said.

The Orioles have been involved in trade discussions about Bedard, who went 13-5 last season with a 3.16 ERA, for more than two months. MacPhail has said he would like to have the situation resolved by the end of the month, but he also has said there is no concrete deadline.

"I wish I could tell what the future is holding, but I do not know," MacPhail said.