The Twins are moving quickly in their search for a president of baseball operations and could hire one by the end of the regular season, club president Dave St. Peter told La Velle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune earlier this week.
“That certainly is within reach,” said Peter. “It’s certainly not a requirement, but I think I have reason to believe that it is possible.”
St. Peter wasn’t willing to discuss specific candidates with Neal, who notes that the next head of the Twins’ baseball department might land the job in the next couple weeks but not take over until late October or early November. That could be the case if the Twins select a candidate from a team with World Series hopes. The Cubs fit that description, and the Twins have shown interest in multiple Chicago executives, including senior vice president of player development Jason McLeod, assistant general manager Shiraz Rehman and pro scouting director Jared Porter. They’ve also been connected to a pair of other likely playoff-bound assistant GMs, the Mets’ John Ricco and the Indians’ Derek Falvey. Royals AGM J.J. Picollo and Rays vice president of baseball operations Chaim Bloom are also possibilities, but Kansas City is barely in the postseason race and Tampa Bay is out of it.
To this point, Minnesota hasn’t reached out to Red Sox GM Mike Hazen or Rangers assistant Thad Levine, reports Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News (Twitter link). It’s unclear if either would want to join the Twins, who have had difficulty finding candidates willing to interview, Yahoo Sports’ Jeff Passan reported Wednesday. “Multiple GM types” haven’t reciprocated the Twins’ interest, per Passan, but St. Peter refuted that notion.
“We certainly understand and appreciate the high level of interest in our search,” he said. “We also recognize that a search of this nature is going to bring in a heavy dose of speculation. I will just say that it also brought a heavy dose of misinformation. Unfortunately, that is a product of the media world we live in today.”
In addition to candidates reportedly turning down Minnesota’s overtures, some teams have declined the Twins’ requests to conduct interviews with key members of their front offices, writes Neal. It’s not unusual for teams to prevent their executives from potentially heading elsewhere, but it’s an inconvenience for a Twins club that has been on the hunt for a front office leader since firing longtime GM Terry Ryan in July.