Late last night, the Astros fired manager Brad Mills and coaches Bobby Meacham (first base) and Mike Barnett (hitting). This morning, the club announced their replacements, all on an interim basis: manager Tony DeFrancesco, first base coach Dan Radison, and hitting coach Ty Van Burkleo. The "getting to know you" phase shouldn't be difficult for DeFrancesco as seven of the nine players in the Astros' starting linuep today played for him in the minors, tweeted Brian McTaggart of MLB.com. Here's the latest out of Houston:
- The coaching staff had no sense the firings were immenient, instead thinking changes would be made after the season, according to ESPN's Buster Olney (via Twitter).
- General Manager Jeff Luhnow, however, told reporters, including McTaggart, the decision was made a week ago. "Once that decision was made, it made sense to make changes sooner rather than later, not having a lame-duck administration. The mix wasn't working, the chemistry wasn't working."
- Speculation has already started on Mills' successor. Joe Pettini, Chris Maloney, and Jim Riggleman are viewed as three potential replacements, writes Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. Pettini was the Cardinals' bench coach before joining Luhnow in Houston in the same capacity. Maloney is the Cardinals' first base coach. Riggleman, previously the manager of the Cubs, Padres, Mariners and Nationals, is managing the Reds' Double-A team.
- MLB Network's Peter Gammons tweets seven names that should be on any managerial search list: Brad Ausmus, Dave Righetti, Tim Wallach, Davey Martinez, Joey Cora, Joe McEwing, and Gabe Kapler.