A look at some possible manager candidates
The Astros could begin contacting potential managerial candidates later this week once owner Drayton McLane returns to Houston from a business trip to Washington, D.C. Gauging from conversations I’ve had with general manager Ed Wade and others in the organization, I’m more and more convinced the Astros will bring in a manager with Major League managing experience.
Because the 2010 club is again going to be made up of mostly veteran players, Wade wants a manager with experience managing in the Minors or Majors and experience on a Major League coaching staff, but I get the feeling we’re not going to see a first-timer on the job. Wade has three pages of names he plans to whittle down to 10 at some point in the near future.
Whether Dave Clark, who certainly has the players’ endorsement for manager, fits their bill remains to be seen, but he is a serious candidate. Clark could be a terrific manager, but he may not get the opportunity here. Or he might. But I still envision him as a long shot to get the job on a full-time basis.
Not being privy to the Astros’ wish list and seeing very few candidates having been tied to the job publicly, I’ve put together a list of some potential managerial candidates you could be reading about in the coming days. In other words, these are men who would likely have interest in the job, but whether the Astros have interest in them remains to be seen:
- Ned Yost: Yost, 54, helped the Brewers return to contender during his a managerial stint in Milwaukee that began in 2003 and ended in the final days of the 2008 season, with the Brewers on their way to their first playoff berth in 26 years. His career record is 457-502.
- Willie Randolph: Randolph, 55, has gone on record and expressed an interest in the job. He was Yankees base and bench coach for 11 years and took over as manager of the Mets in 2005 in his first-ever managerial job. He led the Mets to within one game of the World Series in 2006 and then to their historic collapse at the end of 2007. He was fired in the middle of the 2008 season, and is currently bench coach with Milwaukee. His career record is 302-253.
- Jim Fregosi: A former Gold Glove player during a distinguished Major League career, Fregosi, 67, managed the Phillies to the 1993 World Series and is currently a top scout with the Braves. He managed the Angels (1978-1981) and won an AL West title, guided the White Sox (1986-88), Phillies (1991-1996) and Blue Jays (1999-2000). His career record is 1,028-1,095. He interviewed in 2001 before the Astros hired Jimy Williams and he has deep ties to Ed Wade.
- Tim Bogar: Bogar, 42, is the first base coach for the Red Sox and former Astros infielder. He started his managerial career in 2004 with the Greeneville of the Appalachian League and won the championship en route to being named Manager of the Year. He was named Manager of the Year in the South Atlantic League Lexington Legends in 2005 before leaving the organization. In 2006, he was named Eastern League Manager of the Year with the Double-A Akron Aeros. His career managerial record in the Minors is 250-168.
- Lloyd McClendon: The hitting coach for the Detroit Tigers is now available after his team was bounced by Minnesota in a one-game playoff Tuesday. McClendon, 50, went 336-446 as manager of the low-budget Pirates from 2001-2005. He played seven years in the Major Leagues and was a career .244 hitter.
- Manny Acta: A popular figure in the Astros organizations from his years as a player and a coach in the system, he managed the Washington Nationals for 2 1/2 years and sent 132-198. He previously served as third base coach for Montreal under Frank Robinson in 2002-2005 and was third base coach for the Mets under Willie Randolph until the end of the 2006 season.
- Eric Wedge: The 2007 American League Manager of the Year, Wedge went 561-573 in seven years as manager of the Cleveland Indians and won the AL Central title in 2007. Wedge, 41, is close friends with Jeff Bagwell, who’s an assistant to Ed Wade.