The Toronto Star’s Jeff Blair reports the Blue Jays — rebuffed in most of their free agent pursuits this winter — have stepped up in their attempts to extend their relationship with Vernon Wells, quoting a Yahoo Sports item that claims the outfielder has been offered $126 million (U.S.) over 7 years.

That would make the contract the sixth-highest in baseball history in dollar value. In average annual value, the contract would exceed Soriano’s eight-year, $136-million package.

“It’s somewhere in there,” Wells said Tuesday night from his home in Arlington, Tex., when asked about the Blue Jays’ offer. “But to be honest, other than that, I don’t feel under any obligation to make any more comments about it.”

If they can’t resign Wells before the final year of his deal begins, the team is left with a difficult decision: keep Wells, who hit .303 with 32 home runs and 106 runs batted-in last season, in the hope that he helps them win a playoff spot out of the tough American League East Division. Or trade him, with an eye toward bolstering its starting rotation. Ricciardi has said he would like an indication by the new year whether signing Wells is a realistic goal.

Wells was left off the Blue Jays’ annual Christmas card and has not figured in any of the team’s off-season advertising.

After failing to trade either of ’em, the Braves officially cut ties with P Chris Reitsma and 2B Marcus Giles yesterday, and Jim Baumbach figures the Mets will show interest in the latter.

As Boston’s negotiations with Scott Boras trudge onward, the Globe’s Nick Cafardo is having trouble seeing things from the agent’s perspective.

Matsuzaka is worth more than Roy Oswalt or Roy Halladay or Jason Schmidt? How has that value been determined? By pitching for the Seibu Lions of the Japanese Pacific League? You mean to say that Matsuzaka should be paid more than Josh Beckett, who has won at Yankee Stadium to clinch a World Series? He should be paid more than Curt Schilling?

Japanese baseball is a notch better than Triple A, but also a notch lower than the majors. Granted, it is difficult to gauge his worth, but to say he should make more than a proven All-Star in the majors? Don’t think so.

For as much as Boras should be admired for being a terrific negotiator and innovator, he’s also capable of the ridiculous and absurd. And throwing out a $100 million figure for Matsuzaka is all that.

I’m not so sure.  When the World Series champions have established that $28 million over 3 years is the going rate for Jason Marquis, far be it for me to say Matsuzaka’s demands are unreasonable.

While Feeding The Monster’s Seth Mnookin has been following the Matsusaka saga rather closely, the portion of his blog that’s required reading for is yesterday’s entry where he accuses the New York Times’ Murray Chass of fabricating recent claims the Dodgers were planning on filing tampering charges against the Red Sox over J.D. Drew’s departure.