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Miguel Tejada: Yes, oh Yes

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Here are three pieces of news that haven't changed: Manny Ramirez still wants to be traded, Matt Clement was bad in 2005, and Miguel Tejada still would like to be traded.

Perfect situation for a trade, right?

That's what I found after logging on yesterday. When I first saw the proposed trade, I had one thought on my mind: money. This deal would never happen unless the Red Sox were willing to take on a chunk of change. A huge chunk of change.

Here is how the money game breaks down according to Chris Snow of the Boston Globe:

Ramirez and Clement are owed approximately $22 million more in guaranteed money than Tejada. (Ramirez is due $57 million over three seasons, Clement $19.25 million over two seasons, and Tejada $48 million over four seasons plus $6 million owed on a prorated signing bonus)

$22 million is a lot of extra cash that Baltimore would have to take on. And with their uncertainty of dealing their MVP shortstop, gaining $22 million on the payroll won't push them to make this trade.

I think if we cover half, $11 million, it would do the job for Baltimore. Think about it: we were going to give Johnny Damon $40 million over four years. That broke down, and now we are, basically, spending $11 million (if that's suitable) for Tejada.

With Tejada in the lineup, we have a player that could fill Ramirez's shoes. Tejada would presumably hit third in front of David Ortiz, bumping Ortiz back and giving him more RBI opportunities. Adding Tejada would be big for the simple fact he and Ortiz are really good friends. Losing Ramirez would hurt Ortiz, but gaining Tejada may be even better.

Another way to cut the cost of that extra $22 million Baltimore would take on is by adding utility fielder Melvin Mora to the trade. Odds are they won't want to lose both, but Mora would subtract another $3.5 million from Baltimore's payroll in 2006. Mora, who was converted to a full-time third baseman but struggled immensely, would fill the hole at left field or maybe even center field.

The moral of this trade: money will make or break the deal. It could happen (and fast as the O's say this is the last week they'll deal Tejada), but there are a lot of question marks that still need to be answered.