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Brad Ausmus Rumors
Earlier today, we learned the Cardinals’ Adam Wainwright could miss the rest of the season after suffering an Achilles injury in last night’s game against the Brewers. GM John Mozeliak has said he will wait to determine Wainwright’s status until the right-hander has been examined by team doctors tomorrow. However, that hasn’t stopped the speculation from bubbling as to how the Cardinals will replace their ace.
Here’s the latest on those rumors and the rest of the news from the National League:
- With the Cardinals set to host the Phillies for four games beginning tomorrow, Cole Hamels tops the list of external options to fill Wainwright’s void. Bob Nightengale of USA Today tweets the Cardinals do not have the prospects to satisfy the Phillies, but the Dodgers and Red Sox are lurking.
- Besides Hamels, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s Bernie Miklasz opines the Cardinals could puruse a high-caliber starter entering their walk year like David Price, Jordan Zimmermann or Jeff Samardzija. Miklasz, who does examine the Cardinals’ internal candidates, also suggests signing Paul Maholm or acquiring an under-the-radar pitcher like the Phillies‘ Aaron Harang.
- Hamels trade talks could accelerate in the wake of injuries to Wainwright, the Dodgers‘ Brandon McCarthy and Hyun-jin Ryu, and the struggles of the Red Sox‘s staff, writes Marc Narducci of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
- Speaking of the Dodgers, the new front office’s philosophy of adding depth with low profile transactions was put into place to weather a rash of injuries and those acquisitions will now become more relevant, according to ESPNLosAngeles.com’s Mark Saxon.
- One by-product of Wainwright’s injury could be a renewed push for the NL to adopt the DH, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. “I wouldn’t be opposed,” Max Scherzer told Heyman. “If you look at it from the macro side, who’d people rather see hit — Big Papi or me? Both leagues need to be on the same set of rules. We keep searching for offense. This would be the easiest way to add offense.” Tigers manager Brad Ausmus, as quoted by MLive.com’s Aaron McMann, puts it more bluntly, “When a pitcher goes down with an injury when he’s hitting, you make people second guess the National League’s style of play.“
TODAY: Ausmus was given a three-year deal that includes a club option for a fourth season, tweets Chris Iott of MLive.com.
Ausmus, 44, is currently a special assistant with the Padres. He was previously connected with the Cubs, and also interviewed with the Mariners and Nationals. Over the course of his impressive 18-year playing career, Ausmus caught nearly 16,000 innings, appearing in an All-Star game and winning three Gold Gloves.
Ausmus becomes the third manager to be hired so far this offseason who lacks experience helming a club at the major league level, joining Bryan Price of the Reds and Matt Williams of the Nationals. We've recently seen Mike Matheny guide the Cardinals to back-to-back playoff appearances in his first two seasons as a manager, and his success may have boosted MLB executives' confidence in such candidates.
The move comes as a surprise from Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski, who noted prior to Ausmus' hiring that every skipper he's ever chosen has had managerial experience in pro ball. Dombrowski had also indicated that he had no plans to "change the culture" of the Tigers after the club's recent success, suggesting that team would opt for an internal candidate such as Lloyd McClendon, the former Pirates manager and current hitting coach in Detroit. Other names linked with the Tigers' top dugout job included Dodgers third base coach Tim Wallach and Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo.
The Tigers officially announced Brad Ausmus as the 37th manager in franchise history during a press conference today. Ausmus, who agreed to a three-year contract with a club option for 2017, confirmed Gene Lamont will return as bench coach and would have been his first choice even if he wasn't already on staff. Lamont, who signed a two-year deal to stay in Detroit, has ties to Ausmus as he coached him during his playing days with the Astros. Tigers President/CEO/GM Dave Dombrowski downplayed Ausmus' lack of managerial experience saying he "was born to manage" and cited Joe Torre and Dusty Baker as examples of skippers who succeeded without previous managerial experience. Dombrowski also acknowledged he wanted to interview former Reds shortstop Barry Larkin, but the Michigan alum declined. In other news on the managerial search front:
- The Cubs had been vetting Ausmus for weeks but decided they needed an experienced teacher, tweets David Kaplan of WGN Radio and CSNChicago.com.
- In a second tweet, Kaplan reports Padres bench Rick Renteria is the front runner but the team is considering interviewing Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo.
- The Cubs will indeed interview Lovullo, most likely early this week, tweets FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal.
- No team, including the Cubs, has formally requested permission from the Red Sox to interview Lovullo or any coach on their Major League staff for a managerial position, a source tells Rob Bradford of WEEI.com (via Twitter).
- The Mariners are beginning the second round of interviews this weekend with former Mariner Joey Cora one of the finalists, according to MLB.com's Greg Johns. Tigers hitting coach Lloyd McClendon will also be one of those second interviews, a source told Johns in a second report. A's bench coach Chip Hale will receive a second interview, as well, and the Mariners hope to have a new manager in place by the end of the week, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. Besides Cora, McClendon, and Hale, five others are known to have interviewed with GM Jack Zduriencik: Ausmus, Renteria, Giants bench coach Ron Wotus, Dodgers third base coach Tim Wallach, and ex-Mariner catcher and current broadcaster Dave Valle.
MLB executives expressed surprise that Torii Hunter, Edwin Jackson, Angel Pagan and Mike Napoli didn’t get qualifying offers by Friday’s deadline, ESPN.com’s Buster Olney reports. Here are more notes and rumors from Olney…
- One high-ranking executive suggested Hunter will get some two or three-year offers as a free agent. The outfielder ranked 20th on MLBTR's list of top 50 free agents.
- Evaluators were puzzled by the Nationals’ decision not to make Jackson a qualifying offer. An offer would have set them up for draft pick compensation or another affordable one-year deal.
- GMs and agents expect Pagan to get multiple offers for three years. A four or five-year deal doesn’t seem out of reach for the center fielder.
- Some rival officials expected the Rangers to make Napoli a one-year qualifying offer and set themselves up for draft pick compensation.
- Brad Ausmus, one of the top managerial prospects in MLB, told Olney that it’s important for managers to remember how difficult it is to play at the highest level. “The managers who understood the patience involved are the managers who have related to the players best on teams I have been a part of, and garnered their respect,” Ausmus said.
- The Padres have had some extension talks with Chase Headley, Olney reports. While both sides are interested in a deal, it’s hard to value Headley following his impressive second half performance.
- The Padres will focus on adding starting pitching this offseason, Olney reports. Rival executives like San Diego’s pitching depth, but GM Josh Byrnes will still pursue additions.
The Rockies (98 losses), Marlins (93 losses) and Blue Jays (89 losses) are all searching for new managers as they look to rebound from disappointing seasons. Here are the latest managerial notes from around MLB…
- The Marlins have also interviewed former MLB player and manager Larry Bowa for their managerial opening, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports (Twitter links). Marlins candidates are conducting separate interviews with owner Jeffrey Loria and the baseball operations department, according to Rosenthal.
- Bryan Price interviewed for the Marlins' managerial opening today, Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reports. Price has been the Reds' pitching coach since 2009.
- The Marlins asked to speak with Padres special assistant Brad Ausmus about their managerial opening only to hear that the former MLB catcher isn't interested, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports. Ausmus interviewed for Boston's managerial vacancy and was considered by the Astros before withdrawing his name from consideration. Price and Mike Redmond are also candidates for the position in Miami.
- The Rockies have spoken with former MLB shortstop Walt Weiss regarding their managerial vacancy, Troy Renck of the Denver Post reports. Weiss, the 1988 American League Rookie of the Year, joins Jason Giambi and Tom Runnells as a contender for the position.
- The Rockies are also expected to interview Matt Williams, Renck reports (on Twitter). The former third baseman hit 378 home runs over the course of a 17-year MLB career.
- The Red Sox officially named Torey Lovullo their bench coach today. The 47-year-old former second baseman coached first base for the Blue Jays last year under current Red Sox manager John Farrell.
John Farrell is back in a Red Sox uniform, but that's far from the only managerial and coaching news we'll see this offseason. Here's the latest on some of the open situations throughout the league…
- The Mariners have announced the hiring of Dave Hansen as their hitting coach, writes MLB.com's Greg Johns. Hansen, who has been serving as the Dodgers' hitting coach, finished his Major League career with the Mariners in 2005. In parts of 15 seasons, he batted .260/.360/.369.
- MLB.com's Corey Brock spoke with Brad Ausmus earlier today and was told that Ausmus is happy where he's at and isn't currently pursuing another position (Twitter link). Ausmus has been a popular name among managerial candidates.
- Jason Giambi is a real candidate to manage the Rockies next season and would make a good Major League manager, writes Troy Renck of the Denver Post. Renck runs down several players he's covered throughout the years that thinks could also step into a managerial role with success, including Matt Holliday and Todd Helton. Renck also notes that a decision from the Rox could come prior to the start of the World Series, as MLB frowns on major announcements being made during the Fall Classic.
- As of this afternoon, Indians bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr. had not received a call about interviewing to replace former Blue Jays manager John Farrell, tweets MLB.com's Jordan Bastian.
- ESPN's Buster Olney tweets that if Blue Jays first base coach Torey Lovullo follows Farrell to the Red Sox, it would likely be to serve as Farrell's bench coach.
Everyone’s talking about Alex Rodriguez these days, but some of the chatter out there can be misleading. ESPN.com’s Buster Olney works his way through some popular theories involving the slumping Yankees slugger, separating myth from reality. Here are Olney’s latest notes…
- The Yankees will probably talk to the Marlins about a deal involving Rodriguez “just to get rid of an outdated superstar,” Olney writes. Mark Buehrle and Heath Bell could end up going from Miami to New York if the sides complete a trade. The Yankees and Marlins have had preliminary talks about a possible deal.
- Olney suggests it’d be a clear sign that the Blue Jays don’t view John Farrell as their manager of the future if they’re willing to discuss sending him to the Red Sox. If the Blue Jays aren’t convinced Farrell is their man, they should complete a deal without haggling too much, Olney writes. The Red Sox have begun compensation talks with Toronto, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reported yesterday.
- Brad Ausmus, a candidate for the managerial opening in Boston, did well in his interview, Olney reports.
Earlier today the Reds extended Dusty Baker for another two years. The former Cubs and Giants skipper has led Cincinnati to a pair of NL Central Division titles since taking over the helm. Here are some more links pertaining to managers…
- Rockies bench coach Tom Runnells tells the Denver Post's Patrick Saunders that he's grateful to be considered for another managing position. Runnels has been the Rockies' bench coach for the past three seasons, and hasn't managed at the big league level since 1992 with the Expos. Saunders calls him the leading in-house candidate, and mentions Tim Wallach, Ryne Sandberg and Brad Ausmus as external candidates.
- Don't count Brad Ausmus out as a candidate to take over as the Red Sox manager, writes Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com. It may seem strange that he was called in for an interview since his competition all appears to have extensive managing experience, but Edes notes the success of Mike Matheny this season. He quotes Joe Torre, who managed Ausmus with the Dodgers, in saying that Ausmus reminds him of Yankees skipper Joe Girardi.
- Hal McCoy of the Dayton Daily News calls the decision to extend Baker a wise one. He notes that Baker overcame the loss of Ryan Madson, Nick Masset and Bill Bray before the season even started, and also lost Brandon Phillips and Joey Votto for notable amounts of time.
- McCoy's colleague, Greg Billing, writes that the decision can't be judged until next season. Billing writes that he doesn't often question the decisions of GM Walt Jocketty and the Reds' ownership, but notes that the decision has not been met kindly by fans online.
Joe Girardi won’t be named AL Manager of the Year for his efforts in the regular season — that honor will go to Buck Showalter or Bob Melvin — but he made the most memorable substitution of the year last night when he replaced Alex Rodriguez, one of the most prolific home run hitters in baseball history, with Raul Ibanez. As you know by now, Ibanez homered and then homered again as the Yankees took the lead over Showalter’s Orioles in the Division Series. Now for today’s managerial notes…
- Reds GM Walt Jocketty told reporters (including John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer) that he expects manager Dusty Baker and the coaching staff to return in 2013. Baker has completed his last year under contract with the Reds and said he's “not sure where my career is going here in Cincinnati. We’re going to talk about that in the next couple of days. But I’m not through managing. I have more to do.”
- The Red Sox are prioritizing Major League managing, coaching or playing experience in their search for a new skipper, which is why Triple-A Pawtucket manager Arnie Beyeler is not being considered, reports Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston. The Sox have yet to contact Blue Jays first base coach Torey Lovullo or White Sox third base coach Joe McEwing (who was considered for Boston's managerial job last year).
- The Red Sox will interview Padres special assistant Brad Ausmus for their managerial job early next week, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe (on Twitter). Ausmus, the former MLB catcher, isn’t the only NL West-based candidate who has caught the attention of Red Sox personnel. The Red Sox are also expected to interview Dodgers third base coach Tim Wallach for the position.
- The Rockies announced that they will interview Tom Runnells for their managerial opening, Thomas Harding of MLB.com reports. Rockies executives will interview the 57-year-old bench coach today. Runnells, the former manager of the Montreal Expos, is up against Stu Cole, the manager of the Rockies' Triple-A affiliate.
MLBTR's Mark Polishuk also contributed to this post
The latest managerial news from around MLB…
- The Red Sox have contacted Dodgers third base coach Tim Wallach to determine his interest in their managerial opening, Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald reports. Wallach is interested and the Red Sox are expected to interview him in the coming days.
- Boston continues to target Blue Jays manager John Farrell, Silverman reports. However, hiring Farrell could involve compensation or take a long time, so the club's exploring options such as Wallach, who also drew interest from Boston last offseason. Padres special assistant Brad Ausmus is believed to be on Boston's list of possible candidates.
- The Red Sox intend to start interviews related to their managerial opening on Friday, Rob Bradford of WEEI.com reports. The process will likely continue over the weekend and early next week, Bradford reports.
- Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports outlines the Rockies' managerial options, including Wallach. Under Colorado's new front office structure, director of Major League operations Bill Geivett assumes some of the responsibilities that would traditionally go to the field manager.
- MLBTR had two sets of managerial links yesterday which are worth checking out.