Fredi Gonzalez turns down interview for Cubs' manager job

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Fredi Gonzalez is apparently so confident the Braves will choose him as their new manager when Bobby Cox retires at the end of the season that John Hickey of AOL Fanhouse reports he turned down a chance to interview for the open Cubs’ job.
Last month I was in Atlanta for the annual Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) convention and Gonzalez was also in attendance. He hung around the hotel and sat in on some presentations. Not coincidentally Cox participated in a Braves panel and former GM and current team president John Schuerholz was the convention’s keynote speaker.
All of which struck me as a pretty strong indication that Gonzalez was more or less already in the Braves’ family (or back in, since he was a Braves coach for years) and just waiting his turn to replace Cox at season’s end, particularly since Schuerholz made it very clear at one point that he felt the Marlins made a mistake in firing Gonzalez.
Under normal circumstances I’m sure Gonzalez would join Bob Melvin, Ryne Sandberg, Mike Quade, Eric Wedge in going after the Cubs job, but these aren’t normal circumstances. He has a better gig lined up.

Report: Orioles interested in Lance Lynn

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The Orioles singlehandedly kept the rumor mill churning this weekend. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the club is interested in making a play for free agent right-hander Lance Lynn, adding him to a list of potential candidates that also includes free agent righty Alex Cobb. The two are expected to command similar contracts in free agency, but Morosi notes that the Orioles may prefer Cobb based on his familiarity with the AL East.

Lynn, 30, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Despite missing the 2016 season, he bounced back with a respectable 11-8 record in 33 starts and complemented his efforts with a 3.43 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 over 186 1/3 innings for the 2017 Cardinals. He lost several days with a blister on his pitching hand in early September, but managed to avoid any major injuries and can reasonably be expected to shoulder another heavy workload in 2018.

Lynn may not be the Orioles’ first choice to beef up their starting rotation, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be in high demand as one of very few viable starters on the market this winter. The veteran righty rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals on Thursday and will likely be seeking a multi-year contract, one that Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch estimates around five years and $100+ million. If the Orioles are willing to bite that bullet, they’ll still need to compensate the Cardinals with their third pick in next year’s draft.