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The Giants made a nice start in the free-agent market by signing useful lefthanded reliever Jeremy Affeldt for $8 million over two years. But could they be a player again for one of the biggest free-agent prizes?

They definitely are thinking about a run at one of the big three, meaning superstar pitcher and Bay Area native CC Sabathia or first baseman extraordinaire Mark Teixeira or hitting savant Manny Ramirez. One person familiar with the Giants thinking said that while their need is definitely for offense, their preference among the big three "bounces around'' between the star trio.
The chances for the Giants to make a play still aren't seen as great, not unless they can find a taker for Barry Zito, their free-agent mistake from two years ago. If the Giants can find someone to take a good portion of the remainder of Zito's $126-million, eight-year contract, their chances to play for one of the big three would improve significantly.  

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