Jayson Stark has an update on the Pirates/Phillies rumor involving A.J. Burnett, saying that the talks are "all but dead" (h/t Charlie at Bucs Dugout). Stark notes that the Pirates want assurances that Burnett won't pick up his player option next season, but that they've been unable to get those assurances. Burnett could make as much as $14.25 M next season. Stark says that the Phillies are saying Burnett will retire, and Burnett is telling his teammates the same thing. Stark quoted another executive who noted that Burnett said the same thing last year.

It's a risk for the Pirates to take on Burnett's salary, especially with his history. Last year he said he would pitch for the Pirates, or retire. He spent most of the off-season deciding whether he would retire. Then he decided to play ...

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