Since Jon Daniels was hired by the Texas Rangers, he's been working alongside his college buddy A.J. Preller, who was hired a year before Daniels was tapped to replace John Hart as the Rangers' general manager.
In November, after the dust settled from the Nolan Ryan fiasco, Daniels promoted Preller to assistant GM with hopes of keeping him around for a while. Now, it looks like that might not be happening.
The San Diego Padres, according to MLB.com, requested and were granted permission to speak with Preller about their vacant GM job after firing their GM last week. Preller has played a key role in building the Rangers to what they are now and has always been a trusted right-hand man to Daniels, going back to their days in college.
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Preller's fellow assistant GM Thad Levine, the other part of the front-office troika in Arlington, was a candidate for the Houston Astros' GM job back in 2011 before he withdrew his name from consideration.