Mike Maddux denies pulling name from consideration in Cubs’ manager search

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Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux pulled his name from consideration for the Red Sox’s managerial opening back in November, but said yesterday that he did not do the same with the Cubs’ job. He simply lost out to Dale Sveum.

Maddux cited family reasons for pulling out of the running in Boston, but later interviewed with Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer for the Chicago gig. At the time Epstein indicated that Maddux removed his name from consideration in Chicago for similar reasons, but Maddux is now denying that was the case.

Maddux also told Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune that he definitely would have kept his brother, Greg Maddux, within the Cubs organization as a coach in some capacity, although not necessarily as the pitching coach. Instead now Greg has joined Mike with the Rangers, serving as a special assistant to the front office.

Phillies, Red Sox interested in Carlos Santana

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The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.

Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.

As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.