Angels focused on re-signing Zack Greinke, likely to decline options on Dan Haren, Ervin Santana

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Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com passes along word from “a source familiar with the team’s thinking” that the Angels plan to decline their 2013 options on Dan Haren and Ervin Santana.

Haren’s option is for $15.5 million with a $3.5 million buyout and Santana’s option is for $13 million with a $1 million buyout.

And then, according to Gonzalez, the Angels will “focus their efforts on signing Zack Greinke to a multi-year extension.”

That may be easier said than done, of course, and Gonzalez speculates that Greinke’s price tag will be around $125 million for six years, but the Angels obviously aren’t short on cash and clearing Haren and Santana off the books would certainly leave their rotation wide open for a huge Greinke investment.

Haren has been a front-line starter in the past, but the 32-year-old has struggled through back problems this season while posting a 4.35 ERA. Santana’s overall ERA is 4.93 ERA and the Angels are no doubt getting sick of the 29-year-old’s inconsistency, but he does have a 2.88 ERA and .175 opponents’ batting average in nine starts since August 1.

The Angels are giving managerial candidates a two-hour written test

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Jon Morosi of MLB.com reports that the Los Angeles Angels are administering a two-hour written test to managerial candidates. The test presents “questions spanning analytical, interpersonal and game-management aspects of the job,” according to Morosi.

I can’t find any reference to it, but I remember another team doing some form of written testing for managerial candidates within the past couple of years. Questions which presented tactical dilemmas, for example. I don’t recall it being so intense, however. And then, as now, I have a hard time seeing experienced candidates wanting to sit for a two-hour written exam when their track record as a manager, along with an interview to assess compatibility should cover most of it. Just seems like an extension of the current trend in which front offices are taking away authority and, with this, some measure of professional respect, from managers.