Coming off a 99-loss season, the Twins aren't planning a major front office shake-up, but they are working on some important tweaks.
The team is close to rehiring former assistant General Manager Wayne Krivsky, likely as a special assistant to GM Bill Smith. Krivsky could have a deal with the Twins by next week, people familiar with the discussions said Friday.
Another priority is keeping vice president of player personnel Mike Radcliff. This week, the Twins denied the Orioles permission to interview Radcliff for Baltimore's vacant general manager job.
Citing an industry source, the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network reported Friday that the Twins denied permission "because of internal reorganization and promotions that could be in the works."
Twins officials later explained that Radcliff's title won't be changing -- at least not now -- but the plan is to have the former scouting director focus less on amateur scouting, allowing him to concentrate more on the major league club's specific needs.
It's not clear whether Radcliff had any interest in Baltimore's job. He declined to comment Friday, as did Smith. Twins President Dave St. Peter said, "We are not going to comment on another team's staffing issue and/or executive search."
The Twins have enough on their own plate, trying to bounce back from a 63-99 season. It wasn't a good year for the front office, which raised the payroll to a franchise-record $115 million and sunk to last place.
Many recent trades -- including Wilson Ramos to Washington for Matt Capps, J.J. Hardy to Baltimore for Jim Hoey and Delmon Young to Detroit for Lester Oliveros -- have turned into duds for the Twins and boons for the other team.
Under former GM Terry Ryan, the Twins were often on the other side of lopsided deals, such as the one that sent A.J. Pierzynski to San Francisco for Joe Nathan, Boof Bonser and Francisco Liriano.
Krivsky was Ryan's top talent advisor for that 2003 trade, and others. After the 2005 season, Krivsky left to become the Reds GM. In Cincinnati, he acquired future All-Stars Bronson Arroyo, Brandon Phillips and Josh Hamilton, but his Reds teams combined to go 161-184.
In April 2008, Reds owner Bob Castellini executed a squeeze play, replacing Krivsky with Walt Jocketty.
Krivsky, 57, went on to become a special assistant for the Orioles and Mets, but he has told people he longs for a return to the Twins.
The Twins have spoken with Krivsky about a role that would return him to pro scouting -- he was the team's top National League scout under Ryan -- and they would look to him for advice on trades and contract signings.
The team's current inner circle includes Smith, Radcliff, assistant GM Rob Antony and Ryan, who serves as a senior advisor. All worked with Krivsky for years and would welcome him back into the fold.
Krivsky spent 12 years with the Twins before leaving, but he's been away for nearly six years now, so he could bring a fresh perspective.