Reporting from Orlando, Fla. — Angels General Manager Tony Reagins knows he has a lot of work to do to shore up a club coming off its first losing season in seven years.
And while he has nothing to show for that yet, it's not for lack of trying. Reagins said he kicked the tires on a number of possible deals at baseball's annual general managers' meetings, which concluded Wednesday.
"When you have 29 other general managers in the room, in one location, it becomes easier just to kind of move dialogue along," he said. "So progress is being made laying the groundwork on some things."
Exactly what, he couldn't say.
"It's hard to tell or dictate," he said. "There's times when it can move very quickly. And there's going to be times where it's going to take a while."
Free-agent outfielder Carl Crawford is the biggest name the Angels are chasing, but Reagins isn't limiting his focus to one player. The Angels also must strengthen their bullpen, and among the possible remedies is former Tampa Bay closer Rafael Soriano, who led the American League with 45 saves.
Trouble is, Soriano is represented by agent Scott Boras, who had a major falling out with Angels owner Arte Moreno over negotiations with Mark Teixeira two years ago. Since then, the Angels have steered clear of free agents connected to Boras, but Reagins said Wednesday he is under no edict.
"If there's a player out there and we have interest in the player, the fact that he's represented by any particular agent doesn't matter," Reagins said. "You want to acquire the talent that you need to be successful."
Moreno didn't offer his take on the matter. After arriving Wednesday afternoon to join the two-day owners meetings, Moreno twice refused comment while briskly walking past reporters.
While Reagins found the GM meetings conducive for feeling out player transactions, Dodgers GM Ned Colletti said his discussions were limited mainly to "some opening conversations."
"In the next day or so I'll have more opportunity to do that," said Colletti, who plans to remain in Florida a few more days.
Colletti had a brief meeting Wednesday with former Dodgers infielder Ramon Martinez, a partner of agent Melvin Roman, who represents Dodgers minor league infielder Ivan DeJesus as well as free-agent catcher Yorvit Torrealba.
The Dodgers signed Japanese amateurs Kazuya Takano and Kazuki Nishijima to minor league contracts. According to sources in Japan, Takano is an 18-year-old right-hander whose high school class isn't scheduled to graduate until the spring. He has three effective pitches — a fastball, curve and split-finger pitch. Nishijima is a 21-year-old college left-hander. … Former Angels prospect Dallas McPherson, 30, has agreed to a minor league deal with the Chicago White Sox. He played parts of three seasons for the Angels and last appeared in the majors with the Florida Marlins in 2008. He spent time in the San Francisco and Oakland organizations the last two seasons.