Author: Aaron Gleeman

Koji Uehara

Red Sox have had “preliminary talks” with free agent Koji Uehara

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Koji Uehara struggled down the stretch and was shut down by the Red Sox for much of September, but Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports that the team has had “preliminary talks” about re-signing the free agent reliever.

After being un-hittable for nearly two seasons Uehara went through a stretch of allowing 10 runs in six games, but then he finished the year with three straight scoreless appearances and five strikeouts in three innings.

His overall numbers, while not as ridiculously amazing as 2013, included a 2.52 ERA and 80/8 K/BB ratio in 64 innings, so even at age 40 there figures to be plenty of interest in Uehara on the open market.

Cafardo says the two sides “aren’t close to a deal” yet and presumably Boston has ruled out making the $15.3 million qualifying offer.

Angels won’t let A’s interview hitting coach Dave Hansen

Dave Hansen
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Oakland lost hitting coach Chili Davis to the Red Sox over the weekend and yesterday there were reports of the A’s being interested in replacing him with Angels assistant hitting coach Dave Hansen.

Hansen served as the interim hitting coach following Don Baylor’s leg injury on Opening Day, but the assumption was that if the Angels intend to reinstate Baylor to the full-time role Hansen may want to seek out a hitting coach gig elsewhere.

Not so fast, says Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle, who reports that the Angels “have no desire to allow” the division rival A’s to interview Hansen. She even quotes a source saying the “A’s will have to look elsewhere to fill their need.”

Astros hire former Mets hitting coach Dave Hudgens

Dave Hudgens
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Houston rounded out new manager A.J. Hinch’s coaching staff by adding Dave Hudgens as hitting coach, Gary Pettis as third base coach, and Rich Dauer as first base coach.

Pettis replaces Pat Listach, who was informed earlier today that he would not be asked back following just one season as third base coach.

Hudgens was fired as the Mets’ hitting coach in the middle of this season, which was his fourth on the job. He was replaced by Lamar Johnson, who was then relieved of his duties by the Mets after the season.

Astros fire third base coach Pat Listach

Pat Listach Astros
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Pat Listach will not be part of new manager A.J. Hinch’s coaching staff in Houston, as the Astros informed the third base coach that he won’t be retained for next season.

Listach told Brian McTaggart of MLB.com: “I’m very disappointed. I understand it’s a business, but I’m disappointed.”

Listach has bounced around quite a bit over the years, spending time coaching with the Nationals and Cubs before joining the Astros this season.

As a player he won the Rookie of the Year award in 1992, but played a total of just 354 more games and was out of the majors for good at age 29.

Rangers want to extend GM Jon Daniels’ contract

Jon Daniels
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This afternoon the Rangers officially signed new manager Jeff Banister to a three-year contract and it sounds like there may soon be some contract news regarding general manager Jon Daniels too.

Rangers co-chairman Ray Davis told Calvin Watkins of ESPN Dallas that the team wants to extend Daniels’ contract before the start of spring training, adding: “We’ve been consumed for the last month on this, so his will fall in place.”

Daniels, who’s been the GM since 2005, has one more season remaining on his current deal.