By Shannon Drayer
Add Rick Renteria's name to the the list of known finalists for the Mariners' managerial position is now up to five with Joey Cora, Chip Hale, Lloyd McClendon and Tim Wallach remaining in the running. Greg Johns of mlb.com is the first to report Renteria as a finalist, I have since confirmed. Sources also tell Johns that there are no other candidates at this time.
If the Mariners want Renteria they may want to act quickly as he is a finalist for the Cubs job as well. Some consider him to be a favorite along with Boston bench coach Torey Lovullo. The Red Sox however, have yet to grant the Cubs permission to talk with Lovullo. Usually interviewing a coach under contract is permitted by the coach's current team, but one of the provisions in allowing the Cubs to hire away Theo Epstein two years ago was that the Cubs would not take any other Red Sox employees for an unknown period of time.
The Cubs are said to still be trying to persuade the Red Sox to allow them to interview Lovullo but if they are unable to do so, they could turn to Renteria.
The managerial search is not the only order of business that kept general manager Jack Zduriencik busy Monday as he also extended the qualifying offer to Kendrys Morales who is expected to turn it down by the Nov. 11 deadline.
The following players have been given the qualifying offer:
Last year, all nine players who received the qualifying offer rejected it. Should a player reject the offer, which is $14.1 million this year, he is still free to negotiate with his former team.
Another list for you on this Monday morning: The Baseball Hall of Fame has announced its Veterans Committee nominees. The following players were unable to get the required percentage of votes while eligible the first time around but are on the Expansion Era Ballot, which will be considered by the 16-member committee.
Tony La Russa
Any candidate that receives 75 percent of the vote or more will earn election into the Hall of Fame. Results of the balloting will be announced Dec. 9 at the winter meetings.