The final off day of the baseball season is in the rearview mirror and the 2013 campaign will come to an end no later than Thursday. Once the Series is over, the front office will be able to formally speak with Torey Lovullo about their managerial opening … which at the very least should provide a little clarity, if not accelerate the process.
Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer spent Tuesday with Eric Wedge. The Cubs’ front office appears to be doing their due diligence by talking to as many candidates as possible. Despite the countless reports stating otherwise, there does not seem to be a frontrunner for the Cubs’ job.
One name that has been garnering a lot of attention of late is Brad Ausmus. David Kaplan has been high on Ausmus for a couple of weeks, and Patrick Mooney reported on Tuesday that his sources have indicated the “Cubs continue to take a long look at Ausmus.” After not being interested in Ausmus early in the process, he is on the Cubs’ radar. It is unclear if the Cubs have asked the Padres for permission to talk to Ausmus. The Tigers have already interviewed Brad Ausmus for their managerial opening.
Brad Ausmus’ stock seems to be rising within the Cubs’ organization according to David Kaplan and there are people in the front office that are “very high” on Ausmus.
The Cubs have “discussed Ausmus internally” and there is a connection between Ausmus and the Cubs’ front office. Ausmus was a special assistant to the GM under Jed Hoyer in San Diego.
Theo Epstein set a loose deadline of Nov. 11 to have the new manager in place, and as reported, the Cubs are in no rush to hire the next manager.
Updating the Skipper Search
While the front office continues adding candidates to their managerial search, according to a report from Comcast SportsNet, the Cubs “are said to be doing more background work” on both Rick Renteria and A.J. Hinch. The Mariners and Tigers are also interested in Rick Renteria.
The Cubs appear to be the only team that has interviewed A.J. Hinch for their managerial opening. The Cubs interest in Hinch has raised a lot of questions since his name first popped up. Hinch’s first, and only, experience as a big league manager did not go too well. Throw out whatever his win-loss record was, reports at the time indicated Hinch had a difficult time in Arizona.
David Kaplan reported on Tuesday night that he could not find one baseball man who would tell him that A.J. Hinch would be a good choice and “not one person likes him as a manager.”
According to Kaplan, Manny Acta ”seems to be out of the mix” and while Rick Renteria is a “good guy and a solid baseball man,” one of Kaplan’s sources questioned if his “personality would be a good fit in Chicago.”
As for Eric Wedge, Kaplan said, “Wedge has an awful lot of detractors who either played with him or for him and don’t think he would be a good choice” for the Cubs. Wedge reportedly had an in depth conversation with the front office before spending Tuesday at Wrigley Field. There are indications that Wedge would be a longshot to land the job, mainly due to the lack of history with the Cubs’ front office.
Brad Ausmus’ lack of managerial experience would not check one of the important boxes for the front office. According to Patrick Mooney, “sources say the Cubs are intrigued by Ausmus’ potential, believing his Major League resume as a player would give him credibility in the clubhouse.” Plus, “there’s a feeling that experience would help him handle the pitching staff and work with building-block catcher Welington Castillo.”
Dave Martinez also appears to be out of the running for the job. Mooney added to Kaplan’s report about Acta, plus provided a little tidbit about Acta and Martinez, “It’s harder to see either one getting the job.”
News and Notes
Darwin Barney and Anthony Rizzo fell short for the Rawlings Gold Glove on Tuesday night. Barney lost out on his second straight fielding honor to the Reds’ Brandon Phillips. And Rizzo finished behind Paul Goldschmidt for the NL first baseman’s Gold Glove.
Justin Grimm looked back at his crazy year with the Bristol Herald Carrier.
Click here to take a virtual tour of Fifth Third Bank Ballpark, home of the Kane County Cougars.