The Mets will interview former Rangers and Brewers GM Doug Melvin about their open general manager’s position sometime in the next week or two, Mike Puma of the New York Post reports. Melvin, who has been a senior advisor for Milwaukee since being moved out of the GM role in August 2015, was first linked to the Mets by Fancred’s Jon Heyman back in August. With Mets owner Fred Wilpon reportedly looking to hire a seasoned executive with a scouting background, Melvin’s 30 years of front office experience would certainly seem to make him a solid candidate, though COO Jeff Wilpon is seemingly more keen on a more analytical mind in New York’s baseball ops department. Up to a dozen “serious candidates” are reportedly under consideration for the Mets’ GM job, however, so Melvin still faces tough competition.
Some more from around the baseball world as we prepare for the AL Wild Card game….
- The Nationals are parting ways with assistant GM Bob Miller, as The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal (Twitter link) reports that the Nats didn’t renew Miller’s contract. Miller has worked in Washington for the last four seasons, and has longstanding ties with Nats GM Mike Rizzo when the two worked together with in Diamondbacks organization. Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post (Twitter link) describes Miller as Rizzo’s “right-hand man” in the front office and the team’s “rules guru,” also crediting Miller with the trade that brought Trea Turner and Joe Ross to the Nationals.
- Jonathan Lucroy didn’t contribute much at the plate for the Athletics this season, but the signing of the veteran catcher has become a major move in Oakland’s run to the AL wild card game, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle writes. Thanks to an up-and-down 2017 season, a dropoff in his framing numbers, and perhaps just the overall chilled free agent market, Lucroy had to settle for a one-year, $6.5MM deal from the A’s in March. Catcher became a need for the A’s once Bruce Maxwell fell out of favor with the team, and Lucroy’s veteran knowledge became particularly important given the number of young arms that ended up on the roster due to injuries and a focus on the bullpen. “I don’t even know the numbers of starters that we’ve gone through with unfortunate injuries,” closer Blake Treinen said. “And then the amount of arms that we had in the bullpen through September, trying to keep hitters off balance, knowing what everybody has, trying to read their stuff on that day. [Lucroy has] been pretty solid, to say the least, for us back there, and it’s a good luxury to have.” Lucroy’s mediocre offensive numbers will limit his free agent market and keep him in Oakland’s price range, so it will be interesting to see if the A’s could pursue a reunion with the catcher in free agency this winter.
- White Sox pitching prospect Dane Dunning’s season was cut short by an elbow sprain, but after rehabbing the injury, Dunning tells The Athletic’s James Fegan (subscription required) that he is hopeful of avoiding surgery altogether. Dunning may even get a few instruction league innings under his belt just to test his arm before the offseason. The 29th overall pick of the 2016 draft, Dunning came to Chicago as part of the trade that sent Adam Eaton to the Nationals, and his prospect stock has since been on the rise. He cracked the preseason top-100 prospect lists from Baseball Prospectus, Baseball America, and MLB.com prior to 2018, and then posted a 2.71 ERA, 3.85 K/BB rate, and 10.4 K/9 over 86 1/3 combined innings at A-ball and Double-A this season.