Astros reportedly get permission to talk to Friedman; move remains unlikely
UPDATE, 10:35 AM: Here is a piece from the Chronicle's Richard Justice on why Friedman is the Astros' No. 1 choice.
For the last six months, Jim Crane and George Postolos have had just one wish with regard to Andrew Friedman.
That is, they wanted the opportunity to sit down with the Tampa Bay Rays’ general manager and pitch him the idea of coming back to his hometown and running the baseball team he grew up rooting for.
BREAKING: The Astros have been given permisison to talk with Rays executive VP Andrew Friedman about their open GM job, the Houston Chronicle reported.
It makes sense that the Rays would grant the Astros permission since Friedman talked previously with the Angels, and that he would talk to the Astros since he is a Houston native and they have made it clear he is their top candidate. Rays officials declined comment, as is their policy on such matters.
However, it remains very unlikely that Friedman would leave the Rays, given the close relationship he has with principal owner Stuart Sternberg, team president Matt Silverman and manager Joe Maddon, and the success they have had.
The Chronicle also reported that Rays senior VP Gerry Hunsicker - a former Astros GM - is not expected to be interviewed. Hunsicker has also expressed a desire to stay with the Rays.
Other candidates are believed to include Rangers executives Thad Levine and A.J. Preller.