MLB rumors roundup for August 26

Since Doug Melvin stepped down as general manager of the Milwaukee Brewers on Aug. 11, the team has been looking for someone new to fill the job.

At the time of Melvin's decision to leave the position, owner Mark Attanasio hired an executive search firm to help find a new GM. Of course, a few names have come up -- including the mention of former Boston Red Sox GM Ben Cherington here on Monday -- but there's no indication of a front-runner for the position just yet.

Two more names were thrown into the mix by Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com on Tuesday. Crasnick tweets that Atlanta Braves assistant general manager John Coppolella and Tampa Bay Rays director of player personnel Matt Arnold are making rounds throughout the industry as speculated candidates for the opening. Coppolella has long been mentioned as a possibility to eventually take over as GM of the Braves, while Arnold has moved up the Rays' front-office ladder steadily in the past few years.

Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel named several expected candidates for the position last week, a list that included Coppolella on it.

Whoever gets the job will have a tall task on their hands. The Brewers have been among the worst teams in baseball all year (currently 53-73) and weren't regarded as having one of the best farm systems in the league prior to this season.

Here are a few other rumors making their way around the league today:

  • Hanley Ramirez: The Red Sox are planning to begin working out Ramirez at first base in anticipation of a possible move to the position, Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com writes. For Ramirez, who has been playing left field for the first time in his career this season and struggling at doing so, a change in position appeared inevitable. By moving the 31-year-old to first, Boston can continue to experiment with an outfield comprised of high-potential youngsters Jackie Bradley Jr., Mookie Betts and Rusney Castillo. Ramirez didn't appear to be too upset about the shift, either. "You want young blood out there, hustling and diving all over the place," he said. "I can't do that. I had two surgeries on my left shoulder; I can't be flying all over the place. It's really impressive when you got those three guys out there, and I'm really happy to move to see that."

  • Leonys Martin: The Texas Rangers outfielder will have surgery on Wednesday to remove the hamate bone in his right hand, Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram tweets. Wilson notes that Martin could run and play defense in two weeks time and hit in four to six weeks. Of course, that begs the question as to whether or not Martin will take the field for Texas again this season. The Rangers optioned the 27-year-old to the minors earlier this month as a result of his poor offensive numbers this year (.220 batting average, five home runs).

  • Jeff Francoeur: As mentioned here on Tuesday, the Philadelphia Phillies pulled Francoeur off waivers after failing to work out a deal with the team that claimed him. Although their motives are unknown, we opined that the Phillies could be hoping to re-sign the veteran outfielder next year despite being in a rebuilding phase. For his part, Francoeur doesn't seem too opposed to that happening. "I would come back for the right situation," Francoeur told Todd Zolecki of MLB.com. "I like where we're going right now. Hell, we have the [fourth]-best record in the National League in the second half." The 31-year-old will be a free agent at the end of the season.

  • Chris Perez: The former Cleveland Indians closer has retired, Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com tweets. The Baltimore Orioles signed Perez in July, although he was in the midst of a 50-game suspension for recreational drug use and never threw a pitch for the organization. Perez was an All-Star twice in his time with Cleveland.