Mets general manager Sandy Alderson spoke with reporters just a short while ago at the GM Meetings in Orlando and according to Mike Puma of the New York Post, he said he may still interview one or two more candidates for manager even after speaking with Cardinals third base coach Jose Oquendo today.
The belief was that Oquendo would wrap up the first round of interviews, but according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com, the Mets will decide tomorrow whether to expand the field of first-round candidates or move ahead with the second round, perhaps as early as this week. Alderson is working half-days in Orlando this week after the death of his father on Sunday.
Now that Clint Hurdle was hired to manage the Pirates, Terry Collins and Bob Melvin are the clear front-runners for the job. Are there any darkhorses left in the race? Let your imagination run wild, folks.
Former Red Sox right-hander Nathan Eovaldi is up for grabs this offseason, and Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe says that as many as nine suitors are interested in bringing the righty aboard. While the Red Sox are eager to retain Eovaldi’s services after his lights-out performance during their recent postseason run, they’ll have to contend with the Brewers, Phillies, Braves, White Sox, Padres, Blue Jays, Giants, and Angels — all of whom are reportedly positioned to offer something for the starter this winter.
It wasn’t all smooth sailing for the 28-year-old in 2018, however. After losing his 2017 season to Tommy John surgery, he underwent an additional procedure to remove loose bodies from his right elbow in March and didn’t make his first appearance until the end of May. He was flipped for lefty reliever Jalen Beeks just prior to the trade deadline and finished his season with a combined 6-7 record in 21 starts, a 3.81 ERA, 1.6 BB/9, and 8.2 SO/9 through 111 innings.
Despite his numerous health issues over the last few years, Eovaldi raised his stock in October after becoming a major contributor during the Red Sox’ championship run. He contributed two quality starts in the ALDS and ALCS and returned in Games 1-3 of the World Series with three lights-out performances in relief — including a six-inning effort in the 18-inning marathon that was Game 3.
A frontrunner has yet to emerge for the righty this offseason, but Cafardo points out that the nine teams listed so far might just be the tip of the iceberg. Still, he won’t be the most sought-after starter on the market, as former Diamondbacks southpaw Patrick Corbin is expected to command an even bigger payday following his career-best 6.0-fWAR performance in 2018.