According to FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal, the Blue Jays and the Orioles have discussed a possible trade package that would see current Orioles general manager Dan Duquette be released from his contract (which runs through 2018) in order to become the next CEO of the Blue Jays. However, it appears these discussions are still very preliminary.
Sources: #Orioles, #BlueJays have discussed compensation package that O’s would require for allowing GM Dan Duquette to become Jays CEO.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 14, 2015
Sources add: #Orioles, #BlueJays not close to deal on Duquette, but talks indicate O’s open to his departure; CEO higher position than GM.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 14, 2015
Duquette under contract with #Orioles through 2018. As I’ve previously reported, some O’s people want him to go. Uncomfortable situation.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 14, 2015
This situation reminds me somewhat of what happened around John Farrell's departure, although in that case it was a lateral move rather than a promotion, as it would be for Duquette. Right now, this is certainly more of an "uncomfortable situation" for the Orioles than the Blue Jays as Duquette is still handling the day-to-day affairs of the ballclub. I'm not sure how much longer Duquette can legitimately wield power with these rumours surrounding him. Orioles ownership is probably standing in the way to try and get as much as possible for freeing Duquette, who "wants to leave" Baltimore. So it might be beneficial for the Jays to drag this along as long as possible and to keep leaking bits to the press.
I am also interested to see what type of "package" was discussed between the two clubs. It would likely involve an exchange of players. I'm wildly speculating here, but would it also include an opportunity for the Orioles to interview certain Blue Jays front office personnel to fill their general manage position? Tony LaCava can't be traded per se, but if the Orioles want him and he agrees to go to there (along with a few assistants or scouts) maybe he can be considered part of the deal?
UPDATE - 6:26 pm
Not sure if this will develop into a bigger story later today but according to a Detroit writer, the Blue Jays trade for Dan Duquette is close to completion. Jon Morosi took the time to retweet it so it holds a little bit of water, although he was quick to say that he cannot confirm the report. Morosi also added that he is optimistic that the deal can be done but that Beeston is still representing the Jays at the owners' meetings along with Phil Lind.
Source tells me the Dan Duquette trade from the #Orioles to the #BlueJays is almost done.— Tony Paul (@TonyPaul1984) January 14, 2015
Morosi called into the FAN at 6 pm and pretty much reiterated what he tweeted out so far. He told us that compensation is likely going to be "somewhat in line" with what we have seen recently in the Theo Epstein and John Farrell transactions as Major League Baseball is thought to be involved in the Blue Jays-Orioles negotiations. Morosi thinks that the players involved likely haven't been finalized yet, but we are probably looking at a middle reliever, infielder, or someone of that level rather than a top prospect or a marquee player. He believes that MLB can step in to resolve the awkward situation and allow the two clubs to decide compensation later, citing Epstein's as a precedence (the players were not traded until months after Epstein left for the Cubs). Indeed, according to Buster Onley, MLB is supportive of Duquette's move to Toronto.
Jeff Blair, filling in for Bob McCown, suggested, that it was interesting that reports said that Buck Showalter was the one meeting with Colby Rasmus rather than Duquette. It is known that Showalter has (or had) desired a player personnel role.
UPDATE 2 - 6:47 pm
Peter Connolly of the Baltimore Sun spoke with Orioles owner Peter Angelos, who categorically denied that his club is in--or will be in--any sort of negotiation to release Dan Duquette from his contract, although Angelos acknowledged that the Jays did inquire.
I don't believe Angelos at all. Here has been too much chatter for absolutely nothing to have been discussed.