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AL East Notes: Lucchino, Youkilis, Orioles

Yesterday, we learned that the landscape for free agent pitcher Hiroki Kuroda is now "wide open".  The Red Sox have long been interested in the right-hander and was involved in trade talks to acquire him over the summer before Kuroda decided that he would rather finish the season with the Dodgers.  The Yankees are also expected to be in the mix for the hurler.  Here's more news out of the American League East..

  • The Orioles will announce more front office hires today, according to Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com (via Twitter).
  • Red Sox CEO/president Larry Lucchino said he would not attend the Winter Meetings, writes Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.  This could be a sign that Lucchino is willing to back off or that he is showing full confidence in his new management team of GM Ben Cherington and skipper Bobby Valentine.
  • Cafardo also writes that Boston could use Jed Lowrie and Josh Reddick as trade bait and wonders if the club would part with Kevin Youkilis in a bigger deal.
  • More from Cafardo, as he writes that Red Sox VP of player personnel Allard Baird is likely to come up in connection with the Astros' GM job.  Baird was in the mix for Baltimore's GM vacancy but ultimately opted not to interview for the position.
  • There has been little connection between the Orioles and any starters on the free-agent market which could mean that a trade is their best option, writes Dan Connolly of The Baltimore Sun.  The O's could also use a middle infielder and a DH but both are considered to be back burner issues.
  • New Orioles scouting director Gary Rajsich says he'd like to hire some new amateur scouts by the end of the year, writes Steve Melewski of MASNsports.com.  Rajsich will look to adding a scout in central Florida and add a scout for the New England area to replace Keith Connolly, who recently left the organization.








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