One of the most important offseasons in recent memory is ahead of the Minnesota Twins this winter.
The team has seemingly arrived early, winning the AL Central this past season and ending its miserable 18-game postseason losing streak. It feels like the corner has finally been turned, but the Twins have work to do this offseason to ensure the forward progress doesn't get stunted.
Among the many questions heading into the winter was what would happen to the front office. It wasn't a question anyone had after the ALDS ended but it became one after the Boston Red Sox identified Twins general manager Thad Levine as a top candidate for its top job.
Boston fired GM Chaim Bloom back in September, and Levine was on the shortlist of candidates the team had interest in hiring as a replacement. Not only that, but there was reportedly mutual interest between the two sides which sent a bit of panic throughout Twins Territory.
WIth the World Series set to begin on Friday and the offseason officially starting not long after, Boston is settling on a list of finalists so it can make a hire before hot stove season begins.
Despite the mutual interest, Levine no longer appears to be in the running.
Twins GM Thad Levine no longer being considered for top Red Sox job
According to Twins Daily and later confirmed by The Athletic, Thad Levine is no longer a candidate for the Red Sox GM job. Instead, it sounds like Boston has zeroed in on Craig Breslow and Eddie Romero as the two finalists for the role.
Kim Ng was believed to be the perfect candidate for the job, but she pulled her name out of the search the other week. This seemed to indicate even more than Levine could be leaving the Twins to take the top job in Boston but it wasn't long after that Breslow's name started to get tossed around.
Not for nothing, but Breslow is a former Twins pitcher so the Minnesota-to-Boston hiring connection would still be there. It wouldn't be one that potentially damages the momentum that the Twins front office has built over the last handful of years that appears to now be paying off.
While the Twins were able to keep the front office whole, it's worth wondering how much longer that will be the case. Levine's mutual interest in joining the Red Sox is notable, and Boston won't be the last team to come calling.
Minnesota has pieced together a potential World Series-caliber roster through great signings, excellent trades, and expert drafting. Every level of roster development has been a success, with Levine getting a ton of credit for his part in making it all happen. The better Minnesota plays, the higher the likliehood is that he'll get poached elsewhere in the league.