Morse and LaRoche updates, and your annual Gavin Floyd rumor (updated)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette will meet with reporters in about 90 minutes. In the meantime, here’s the latest from the lobby. Believe as much or as little as you choose.

I’m told that the Orioles have “lukewarm” interest in Nationals first baseman Michael Morse, who could be available in a trade. They’re monitoring the D.C. situation.

Nats general manager Mike Rizzo told that he hasn’t been contacted by the Orioles during the meetings and he hasn’t reached out to them. There’s nothing hot at the moment.

The Orioles’ reported interest in Adam LaRoche seems to be exaggerated, though it’s apparently increased since executives arrived in Nashville.

The Orioles and Rangers are viewed in some circles as the Nats’ biggest competitors for LaRoche, but again, that would go against executive vice president Dan Duquette’s claim that he’s more likely to trade for a bat. It also would be a highly expensive alternative to Mark Reynolds. is now reporting that the Rangers aren’t pursuing LaRoche, which contradicts everything we’ve heard at this point. Maybe a shrinking market works in the Orioles’ favor. Maybe it cements a return to the Nationals.

Also, I’ve heard that the Orioles have renewed interest in White Sox pitcher Gavin Floyd. This is coming from an executive with another team. Then again, I’ve written it every winter and I’m still waiting for a deal to get done.

Floyd, 29, grew up in Severna Park and pitched at Mount St. Joseph. He’s intrigued the Orioles for years. Duquette wants to bring more local talent to the Orioles. It’s a logical connection that, so far, has led to nowhere.

The Orioles are looking to add a veteran pitcher and talks continue with free-agent left-hander Joe Saunders. Floyd, 29, has one year and $9.5 million left on his contract. He went 12-11 with a 4.29 ERA in 29 starts this year. He’s made between 29-33 starts every year since 2008.

I don’t have any information on whether talks are active. Just hearing that the Orioles have interest. Again.

I’ll believe it when I see him in orange and black. But it wouldn’t be a Winter Meetings without a Gavin Floyd blog entry.

Update: I’m told that the White Sox are mainly focused on acquiring a third baseman. The Orioles can’t be much help in that department.

Don’t suggest Wilson Betemit.

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