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Orioles' trade talks with Dodgers regarding Matt Kemp were preliminary

Orioles' trade talks with Dodgers regarding Matt Kemp were preliminary
Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp. (Stephen Dunn, Getty Images)

There has been a lot of speculation about the Orioles' interest in Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp recently.

Even though it is true that the teams have discussed a trade, it is believed that those talks were preliminary and have not materialized into anything significant, according to a source.

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The sense is that the Dodgers inquired about acquiring one of the organization's top two young pitchers -- right-handers Kevin Gausman or Dylan Bundy.

That's where a lot of trade talks with the Orioles begin, and it has been that way for several offseasons. And like in the past, the Orioles don't have any intent on moving Gausman or Bundy unless the deal is too good to pass up.

In this case, the Orioles said no, and the talks didn't progress far beyond that.

Kemp, 30, was the runner-up for the National League Most Valuable Player award in 2011 and signed an eight-year, $160 million extension after that season, which at the time was the largest deal for a NL player.

There are five years and $107 million remaining on Kemp's contract, so even if the Orioles were intrigued with him, it doesn't seem likely that they would take on the entirety of his remaining salary.

This past season was Kemp's best since 2011. He batted .287/.346/.506 with 25 home runs and 89 RBIs in 150 games.

After seeing slugger Nelson Cruz agree to terms with the Seattle Mariners and right fielder Nick Markakis' return becoming less likely, the Orioles do have significant holes to fill in their batting order. Currently, their starting outfield consists of Adam Jones, Alejandro De Aza and Steve Pearce.

Gausman, who will turn 24 in January, was 7-7 with a 3.57 ERA in 20 starts for the Orioles in 2014 and enters next season looking to solidify a spot in the club's starting rotation.

The Orioles also expect big things from top prospect Bundy, 22, this upcoming season as he is nearly two years removed from Tommy John surgery.

eencina@baltsun.com

twitter.com/EddieInTheYard

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