There are those who believe Brian Cashman wants to be the next Mariners general manager. There are those who believe Jerry DiPoto of the Diamondbacks and Rick Hahn of the White Sox are the top candidates, and those who remember Al Avila from the Tigers was the runner-up the last time the Mariners searched.
Then there's that other name that circulated through the baseball world this week: Randy Smith.
Smith hasn't been heard from much since he was fired six years ago after a mostly unsuccessful run in Detroit. He's impressed people with his international scouting work with the Padres, particularly with this month's signing of five top young Dominican prospects.
And now his name is out there again.
It's hard to say what his chances are, particularly since it's still not certain who will be hiring the next Mariners GM. As Scott Miller of CBSSports.com reported earlier this month, there's a real chance Microsoft executive Chris Larson could take control of the Seattle club, with current Phillies GM Pat Gillick taking over to run the baseball operation.
Those close to Gillick say that he would have no interest in being the Mariners GM himself. It's not clear whether he'd want to bring someone with him from Philadelphia to run the team (Charley Kerfeld?), or whether he'd be open to hiring someone like Smith, who he has known for decades.
In any case, Smith said he's ready for another chance.
"Obviously, I'd love the right opportunity in the right place," he said. "I enjoy what I'm doing, but I enjoy the GM job as well. When I became a GM the first time (in San Diego in 1993), that was a goal. Now, I don't have to be a GM to be happy."