Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette a candidate to become Blue Jays CEO


ESPN’s Buster Olney has the scoop

This news kind of has an odd ring to it — the teams being AL East rivals and all — but FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal notes that it would be a promotion for Duquette so it’s difficult for the Orioles to stand in his way of accepting. Rosenthal also says that Duquette is a “top candidate,” not just a name being floated.

Duquette has done a terrific job in Baltimore since his hiring in November 2011, leading the O’s to a 93-win season in 2012, an 85-win season in 2013, and a 96-win division-championship season in 2014.


UPDATE, 2:08 p.m. ET: Rosenthal says Duquette “wants to leave” the Orioles for the new opportunity in Toronto, but O’s owner Peter Angelos is standing in his way. The Orioles could ask for compensation from the Blue Jays, as the Red Sox did when Theo Epstein left to become president of the Cubs.

Diamondbacks, T.J. McFarland avoid arbitration

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Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.

McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).

McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.