LaCava, who was officially offered the job Tuesday, said the Orioles' offer was on par financially with what a traditional GM job would warrant, and he refuted rumors that he wasn't going to be allowed the freedom to make certain personnel moves and reshape the organization's infrastructure.
"Truly, it wasn't like that at all," said LaCava. "When they called for permission, I wasn't actively looking to leave the Blue Jays. I have a great dynamic with the general manager, he's a dear friend. I have a desire to see things through with him.
I wanted to explore [the Orioles' job]. You need to at least look at it, but I always knew in my heart that I was going to be weighing it with Toronto."
It's unknown what the next step will be for the Orioles, who could expand their candidate pool and conduct more interviews, or offer the position to either of the two remaining candidates: Dodgers assistant GM DeJon Watson or Baltimore's director of player development John Stockstill. As of late Tuesday night, the organization has not asked for permission from Texas to interview any potential candidates, such as the heavily rumored Thad Levine.
Watson, who has met with the Orioles several times as well according to Yahoo! Sports, remains in play, while Stockstill is seen as more of a wild card, particularly given the organization's struggles in scouting and player development. Watson also interviewed for the Arizona Diamondbacks' GM job last year, which eventually went to Kevin Towers. He just completed his fifth season in charge of the Dodgers' Minor League system, which was named the best in baseball in 2010 by Topps. Watson joined the Dodgers from Cleveland, where he was scouting director, and he was also the scouting director for Cincinnati.
LaCava, 50, is regarded as one of baseball's most savvy talent evaluators and served as a scout for the Los Angeles Angels, Atlanta Braves, Montreal Expos and Cleveland Indians before joining the Blue Jays. He was moved up from assistant to the GM to assistant GM in October 2007, and he assumed the duties of director of player development in '09. The Orioles' job was the third GM position for which LaCava has interviewed -- he also interviewed in Pittsburgh and Seattle -- but this is the first he has turned down an offer.
"I just felt like I couldn't leave the Blue Jays, and its nothing against the Orioles," LaCava said. "[The whole interview process] was good. The baseball conversations were good. The vision and commitment is there by ownership, so hopefully, it's going to be a real good fit for somebody and I'm sure they'll make a great hire."