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Report: Ben Cherington in the running to become Pirates’ president of baseball operations

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The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports that Ben Cherington, the current Blue Jays vice president of baseball operations, is a candidate to become the Pirates’ president of baseball operations. Cherington is second in command to Tony Lacava in Toronto.

The Pirates cleaned house following another disappointing season, firing manager Clint Hurdle, pitching coach Ray Searage, GM Neal Huntington, and president Frank Coonelly. The Pirates finished 69-93, their worst record since 2010.

If he were to land the job, the 45-year-old Cherington would head up his own department in Pittsburgh, having to revamp both a coaching staff and a roster. Prior to joining the Jays, Cherington was GM of the Red Sox from October 2011 to August 2015.

Royals, Alex Gordon close to contract agreement

Alex Gordon
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MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that the Royals and outfielder Alex Gordon are “getting close” to an agreement on a one-year contract. Terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but the Royals could make it official within the next few days.

Gordon, who turns 36 years old next month, hit .266/.345/.396 with 13 home runs and 76 RBI over 633 plate appearances with the Royals this past season. His offense has waned, owning an adjusted OPS of 84 since 2016 (100 is average), but he still plays decent defense.

Gordon has spent all 13 years of his major league career with the Royals. With the club in a rebuilding phase, he will serve as the clubhouse leader and be a mentor to younger players on the roster.