The Red Sox have started looking for a new front office boss, and a familiar face might be on their radar since ESPN’s Buster Olney (X link) reports that Diamondbacks GM Mike Hazen “is one of the names discussed” as a potential candidate. Hazen is a Massachusetts native and he previously worked for the Sox from 2006-16, including a stint as the club’s general manager during the 2016 season. Hazen was the top lieutenant under president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski that year before Arizona hired him away to lead their front office.
Hazen’s time in the desert has included the lows of two brutal seasons in 2020-21, and the highs of a playoff appearance in 2017, three winning records in six full seasons, and a club that is fighting for another postseason berth with a 79-72 record this year. Between this season’s success and the wealth of quality young talent in Arizona’s farm system, Hazen might not necessarily be too eager to consider a job change, especially considering that the D’Backs have him under contract through the 2024 season (with a club option for 2025).
As Olney notes, Hazen could potentially leverage any interest from the Red Sox into a new extension from the D’Backs, though one would imagine that Arizona was already looking to retain an executive who has seemingly gotten the team back on track. Since the Diamondbacks would have to give permission for Hazen to be interviewed by another club, it’s possible Boston’s interest might go unexplored if the D’Backs aren’t willing to give that consent. It also isn’t known if Hazen is seen as a prime candidate for the Sox, or if they were doing some natural due diligence early in their front office search on an experienced executive with many past Boston ties.
More from around the NL West…
- Alex Cobb recently revealed that he has been pitching through hip discomfort for over three months, though he has still posted a respectable 4.20 ERA over his last 13 starts and 70 2/3 innings pitched. The Giants have been trying to manage the injury with a cortisone shot and some extra rest, as Cobb had eight days between his most recent two starts, and will be working on eight more days of rest when he is scheduled to take the mound Tuesday for a big game with the Diamondbacks. Cobb underwent hip surgery in 2019, though he told Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle that he doesn’t believe he’ll need another procedure to address his current impingement (which is in his left hip, whereas his right hip previously received the surgical repair). However, Cobb did add “I should get more clarity on it, honestly,” which is something of an ominous admission for the veteran hurler. Trying to tough it out carries some extra risk for Cobb since he technically isn’t under contract for 2024 — San Francisco holds a $10MM club option ($2MM buyout) on his services for next year.
- The Rockies placed left-hander Kyle Freeland on the 15-day injured list today due to a right oblique strain, so Freeland won’t pitch again during the 2023 season. The oblique injury forced Freeland to make an early exit from Saturday’s game, and continued the season-long string of pitching injuries that has devastated the Rockies’ staff. It was a frustrating year overall for the veteran southpaw, who posted a 5.03 ERA and one of the sport’s lowest strikeout rates (13.9%) over 155 2/3 innings.