The World Series is upon us, which means that we won’t be learning – at least not officially – of the Cubs’ new manager for another week or so, at least. MLB frowns on major announcements during the World Series, and it’s a long, impactful frown. That doesn’t mean the search process won’t continue, however.
To that end, Dave Kaplan reports that the Cubs could conduct second interviews over the next week or so, which might give us an idea of which candidates remain seriously in the mix at this point. The Cubs still haven’t had a chance to speak to Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo yet, however, so it’s unclear how far along the Cubs would take the process with any other particular candidate until Lovullo is available for a conversation.
And to that point, Kaplan says the Cubs haven’t actually made a decision yet on whether they want to speak with Lovullo. That runs counter to previous reports that indicated that the Cubs were simply waiting out the Red Sox’s playoff run to interview the well respected bench coach.
Kaplan’s piece is worth a read, as he speaks with a former AL GM (current NL scout), who evaluated each of the known candidates. The short version is similar to what Kaplan’s position has been all along: A.J. Hinch is a nonstarter, Rick Renteria and Dave Martinez are solid options, and Brad Ausmus is the most intriguing option. Note, however, that Ausmus has largely been dismissed as a serious candidate by others.
We’ll have to keep on listening this week to see if any candidate make a return trip to Chicago (or, in Renteria’s case, if the Cubs make a return trip out West. A report in the Tribune has at least one Cubs official doing just that this week).