SARASOTA, Fla. -- Orioles owner Peter Angelos said last night that he has granted the San Diego Padres permission to talk to assistant general manager Frank Robinson, but isn't sure if Padres president Larry Lucchino will follow through with an offer.
Angelos, responding to a report in the Washington Post that said he had refused permission to talk to Robinson, said there had been a misunderstanding and he had called Lucchino last night to clear it up.
"I called him and told him to go right ahead if he wanted to talk to Frank," Angelos said. "As fond as I am of Frank Robinson, I'm not going to stand in his way if Larry wants to give him a better job. I also called Roland [Hemond] tonight and told him to get in touch with Frank and tell him that if he wants to talk to the Padres, he is free to do so."
Robinson was not available for comment last night, but he said earlier in the day that he had not heard anything first-hand about a job with the Padres, but had heard from friends about the newspaper report. He did not comment on whether he would leave the Orioles, but a job with the Padres would put him just 100 miles from his Beverly Hills, Calif., home.
Lucchino would not comment last night, but it seems unlikely he'll make a strong push for Robinson, since the Padres' current GM -- Randy Smith -- is considered one of baseball's brightest young executives.
If Robinson were to be hired as vice president in charge of baseball operations, it would create the same kind of executive logjam that caused the departure of former Orioles assistant GM Doug Melvin.
"It's more of a special assignment-type deal," Smith said last night. "I know it's not for the GM job."