ATLANTA -- The Orioles likely will ask Kevin Malone, the leading candidate to replace Roland Hemond as general manager, to go through a second interview in Baltimore this week, a club source said.
Malone, 38, the former GM of the Montreal Expos, had a successful interview two weeks ago. At that time, ex-San Diego Padres GM Randy Smith appeared to be the front-runner to replace Hemond. But Smith went to the Detroit Tigers, and Malone, who appears to be the club's leading choice will get a second, more intensive round of questions.
The Orioles also are expected to at least make contact with several other possible candidates, including Boston Red Sox assistant general manager Mike Port, New York Mets assistant GM Gerry Hunsicker and Atlanta Braves scout Bill Lajoie, a former GM for the Tigers.
In September, the Orioles were denied permission to interview Cleveland Indians assistant GM Dan O'Dowd, and it appears the only chance that O'Dowd would re-enter the picture would be if Cleveland owner Richard Jacobs reversed his decision.
Orioles assistant general manager Frank Robinson will be interviewed in San Diego today for Smith's old job. Hunsicker was highly recommended within the Padres' front office, but in his interview last week, he did OK -- not terrible, not great -- leaving the door slightly ajar for Robinson. Florida Marlins assistant GM Frank Wren was interviewed last week as well, and a club source in San Diego said he did well.
According to the job description, the Padres are looking for someone with a strong scouting or player development background.
How much of that does Robinson have?
"Zero," he told the Associated Press.
But Robinson, 60, doesn't see that as an impediment.
"The way I look at it, I've spent over 42 years in the game, as a player, manager and as a front-office executive," Robinson said. "So all that wrapped into it, and the knowledge that I've gathered watching other people, is very important.
"From the baseball expertise side of it, I feel I can match up with anybody."
Davey Johnson is expected to be named manager of the Orioles; if it happens in the next week, the announcement likely will be made today or Friday, days off for the World Series. Major League Baseball asks teams to refrain from making major moves on days the World Series is played.
Assuming that Johnson is picked as manager, a strong coaching candidate will be John Stearns, who worked with the Cincinnati Reds as a coach this year (although he had no official title). Stearns, the former Mets catcher, was valued by Johnson for his work ethic, and may be considered as a base coach.
Mel Stottlemyre, who resigned as pitching coach for the Houston Astros last week for personal reasons, could join Johnson again; Stottlemyre was Johnson's pitching coach with the Mets in the 1980s.