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As trade deadline nears, rumors swirl around Angels

SportsBaseballLos Angeles AngelsHowie KendrickErick AybarUnrest, Conflicts and WarKansas City Royals

ARLINGTON, Texas — Less than 24 hours before Wednesday’s 1 p.m. PDT non-waiver trade deadline, rumors were flying about the Angels, who entered Tuesday 14 games game back in the American League West and in rare selling mode.

The Cardinals reportedly have inquired about shortstop Erick Aybar, the Yankees are interested in third baseman Alberto Callaspo, the Royals are hot for second baseman Howie Kendrick, and the Angels are interested in Arizona pitcher Ian Kennedy.

One person who seemed oblivious to it all was Manager Mike Scioscia, who is not on Twitter, not on Facebook, and not really up to speed on many of the rumors.

“The one thing I try to reinforce with the players is don’t believe what you read in the papers and don’t look at all the rumors,” Scioscia said, before asking reporters, “Isn’t there a website now just devoted to trade rumors?”

Told that MLBTradeRumors, the industry leader in aggregating rumors and personnel moves from multiple sources, has been in existence for eight years, Scioscia said, “Yeah, and I think we discovered electricity, too.”

The Angels are not expected to trade Aybar or Kendrick unless they can get a front-line major league or major league-ready starting pitcher in return. One problem with Kansas City’s pursuit of Kendrick: According to Foxsports.com, the Royals are one of 12 teams on Kendrick’s no-trade list.

“I don’t even know who’s on my no-trade list,” Kendrick claimed Tuesday. “I would have to ask my agent.”

The Angels’ pursuit of Kennedy, a former Westminster La Quinta High and USC star, is more of a buy-low, hope-for-high-return venture. The right-hander, 3-7 with a 5.22 earned-run average before his start Tuesday against Tampa Bay, is having his worst season in the big leagues, and he wouldn’t cost the Angels a front-line big leaguer.

But Kennedy is only two years removed from a 2011 season in which he went 21-4 with a 2.88 ERA, and Angels General Manager Jerry Dipoto is familiar with Kennedy from his days as a Diamondbacks executive.

Arizona reportedly is looking to clear the $1.4 million left on Kennedy’s 2013 contract to make a run at Houston’s Bud Norris or Jake Peavy of the Chicago White Sox.

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