Beyond the chase for Carlos Beltran, there’s much chit-chat happening at the Winter Meetings concerned the lesser tier of baseball talent, including Philadelphia’s intentions towards P David Wells, as covered by the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jim Salibury :

Wells, who turns 42 in May, is a proven winner and innings-eater who went 12-8 with a 3.73 ERA in 31 starts for the San Diego Padres in 2004.

Wade and his assistants have been in touch with the representatives of more than a dozen free-agent starting pitchers, everyone from Pedro Martinez and Derek Lowe, to Jon Lieber and Matt Morris, to Woody Williams and Russ Ortiz. The attraction to Wells, in addition to his winning pedigree, can be summed up in one word: flexibility. Wells is willing to take a one-year contract, and the Phils, who already have a number of players on long-term deals, find that appealing.

“I think the Phillies have legitimate interest,” said Wells’ representative, Gregg Clifton. “I know David has legitimate interest in them. He did last year.”

The Padres have expressed interest in re-signing Wells, who has 212 career wins. The Dodgers, Rangers and Indians have also expressed interest. The Phils could have an edge because Wells has a home near their Clearwater, Fla., spring-training site. He is also a hunting buddy of Jim Thome.

Contrary to earlier reports, both Mel Stottlemyre and Don Mattingly will remain part of Joe Torre’s Yankee coaching staff. Former catcher Joe Giradi has been hired as New York’s new bench coach, replacing Willie Randolph.