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January 19, 2014 at 11:48 AM

A few links and notes …. LaRussa doubts he’ll get an interview with the M’s

Greetings from Sports Authority Field in Denver. I’m here covering the AFC title game for the Times in preparation of a possible Seahawks’ super bowl appearance.

When I was asked by my editors if I was interested, my reply: “OMAHA! OMAHA! 56 IS THE MIKE! HURRY! HURRY!”

But with an hour or so till game time, I figured I could toss out a few links on a quick blog.

Tony LaRussa told Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post Dispatch that he likely won’t even get an interview with the Mariners as a replacement to Chuck Armstrong.

 ”My name’s been mentioned. That’s all it is.

“It’s likely I won’t even get an interview. I’ve heard they’ve got a couple of good guys in house. I think it’s a wonderful opportunity and I would love to put my two cents in as to what contribution I could make. But I don’t think it’s going to happen.

“I was a little embarrassed by the attention.”

The Mariners were interviewing in-house candidates. My guess is that either Bob Aylward or Kevin Mather will likely get the job. I’d expect an announcement within the next few weeks.

Bob Dutton of the TNT has the arbitration figures for Justin Smoak and Logan Morrison.

Jeff Sullivan had a pretty interesting post on USS Mariner about the possibility of signing Nelson Cruz. With the market for Cruz pulling a Figgins, the Mariners could sign the slugger at a major discount. Jeff examines when that discount would make sense.

Nikkan Sports of Japan listed some of the teams that made official offers to Masahiro Tanaka. The Mariners are not on that list. GM Jack Zduriencik did not go to LA to see Tanaka when he was meeting with teams. The Mariners were definitely interested in Tanaka. But it appears the team may have been priced out of contention or Tanaka’s interest in Seattle wasn’t as high as some thought. I’m of the opinion that a contract of 6 years, $120 million (Diamondbacks reported offer) is just too much for a pitcher, who has never thrown a big league pitch.

cotillo

Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish tweets that the Mariners are interested in Scott Baker on a minor league deal. Baker has battled elbow issues in the past. He’d be a serviceable pitcher in the back end of the rotation if he can return to his 2011 form. Safeco Field could be relatively friendly for him.

Lookout Landing (Ashley Varela) looks at some of the pitcher projections and here’s another post on Nick Franklin’s comments to the Hot Stove League Show about his future with the team.

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