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Twins reportedly believe Phillies will ask to interview GM Thad Levine

Add another executive to the list of candidates for the Philadelphia Phillies president of baseball operations position.

Citizens Bank Park has been home to the Phillies since 2004. (Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire)

Ken Rosenthal and Jayson Stark of The Athletic report that the Minnesota Twins believe that the Phillies will ultimately ask them for permission to interview their general manager, Thad Levine, to become the president of baseball operations in Philly.

If the Phillies do ultimately ask for the chance to speak with Levine, it’s not clear whether the Twins would allow Levine, under contract through 2024 in Minnesota, to interview. Traditionally, teams have allowed executives to interview for promotions, and going from being a general manager to a president of baseball operations would be a promotion. That said, there’s no rule that says teams have to allow their employees to interview for any role with another organization. If the Twins decide they’re going to hold Levine to the contract extension he signed 369 days ago, they could block the Phillies’ request to interview him, and that would be that.

The 49-year-old’s career in the sport began in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization, though his baseball ops career really began with the Colorado Rockies in 1999. From October of 2005 until November of 2016, Levine was Jon Daniels’ assistant general manager for the Texas Rangers, a period that included two World Series appearances. Now in Minnesota, the Twins have reached the playoffs in three of the last four seasons, including posting a .617 winning percentage over the past two regular seasons. The Twins have done a good job of mixing homegrown players – Bryon Buxton, Max Kapler, José Berríos – with external additions, like Kenta Maeda and Nelson Cruz. That’s a formula that the Phillies would like to emulate.

Levine completed his bachelor’s degree and played baseball at Haverford College, so he does have some local ties. Whether where he went to college at nearly three decades ago would have any factor in his willingness of come to Philadelphia is unknown.

The bigger connection may be that Levine works for the Twins currently, an organization that both current Phillies’ president Andy MacPhail and special assignment scout Terry Ryan have previously been employed by. Though neither worked directly with Levine, it shouldn’t be difficult for them to get reliable insight on his competence.

Though Theo Epstein seems set on taking a year off before pursuing his next job in baseball, Bruce Levine of 670 The Score and Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia both say that the Phillies will attempt to lure the future Hall of Fame executive to Philadelphia.

Landing Epstein to be the president of baseball operations in Philadelphia seems about as likely as Tampa Bay Rays’ general manager Eric Neander. Jon Heyman of RADIO.COM Sports says the Phillies have interest in Neander, but Rosenthal has previously reported that Neander is not interested in leaving Tampa Bay.

Former Miami Marlins’ president of baseball Michael Hill is going to interview with the Phillies, per Stark. Hill appears to be a qualified – and potentially attainable – target. That said, the Phillies could have competition from the New York Mets, who have already interviewed Hill for the same position according to Andy Martino of SNY.

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