Shi Davidi of Canada’s Sportsnet says the Blue Jays’ search for a new manager is being treated as a “tightly held secret.” But there are some hints.
Dodgers third base coach Tim Wallach is expected to interview, as are Orioles third base coach DeMarlo Hale, Indians bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr. and Blue Jays third base coach Brian Butterfield.
Brad Ausmus, a rising star who interviewed for the opening in Boston, is not in the running because the Jays want someone with past coaching experience. Ausmus has been working as a special assistant in the Padres’ front office since hanging up his cleats.
The job in Toronto opened up earlier this month when John Farrell was traded to the Red Sox.
Bob Nightengale of USA Today says that the San Francisco Giants “have keen interest” in Rays third baseman Evan Longoria.
Longoria is coming off his worst season as a major leaguer, having hit .261/.313/.424 with 20 homers in 2017. He’s also still owed $86 million through 2022. Which, back when the deal was signed seemed like quite a bargain for the Rays — and likely has been over the duration of the contract — but now seems somewhat steep for the 32 year-old third baseman. That said, the Giants currently have Pablo Sandoval penciled in at third base on their depth chart, so Longoria would definitely be an upgrade, even if 2017’s dip wasn’t just a blip.
Nightengale says that for the Giants to take on Longoria, the Rays would have to take on a high salary veteran such as Denard Span or Hunter Pence. Span is owed $9 million in 2018, with a $4 million buyout on a $12 million option for 2019. Pence is owed $18.5 million in 2018 in the final year of his contract and has a full no-trade clause.
If he stays with the Rays, Longoria will achieve 10-5 rights — full no-trade protection due to being a ten-year veteran with five years of service on the same club — so if the Rays are going to move him, it’ll be much easier this offseason, not once the 2018 season begins.