Source: Rays' Bloom favored to be Red Sox GM

Tampa Bay Rays executive Chaim Bloom is the favorite to become the next general manager of the Boston Red Sox, a source tells ESPN’s Jeff Passan.

Bloom, 36, is the Rays’ senior vice president of baseball operations. He has spent 15 years with the team in capacities including minor league operations, player development, contract negotiations, salary arbitration and international scouting.

He has operated in a front office unlike Boston’s in that the Rays have a low budget and remain competitive. This season, they had the lowest payroll on opening day at $49.08 million, and the Red Sox had the highest at $187.23 million.

The Red Sox fired Dave Dombrowski, their president of baseball operations, in September, less than a year after winning the 2018 World Series. Boston failed to make the playoffs this season, finishing 84-78, 19 games behind the American League East champion Yankees.

Late in September, Red Sox owners John Henry and Tom Werner said at a news conference that they intended to make major cuts to the payroll to get under the luxury tax threshold next season, saying they fired Dombrowski because of differing opinions on how to build for the future.

It’s a crucial offseason for the Red Sox, who need to decide what to do about 2018 MVP Mookie Betts, who will be a free agent after next season, and J.D Martinez, who can opt out of his $23.75 million deal five days after the World Series, as well as other players on expiring contracts.

Bloom is a Philadelphia native and attended Yale University, graduating in 2004 with a bachelor’s degree in classics.

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