UPDATE: The gig is reportedly going to Ron Gardenhire. Original post follows.
Whenever a GM or President of Baseball Ops job opens up around MLB, multiple Cubs front office members are often mentioned among the potential candidates. After all, when you’re young, talented, and part of winning organizations, people tend to take notice.
And the same goes for open managerial gigs and Cubs Bench Coach Dave Martinez. For years now, baseball insiders have been hinting that Martinez might soon get a shot to steward his own ship, especially after he was overlooked to replace Joe Maddon in Tampa Bay (he even previously interviewed with the Cubs). Well, that day may be quickly approaching.
After apprenticing under Joe Maddon for a full decade now, Martinez is reportedly a finalist to manage the Detroit Tigers starting in 2018.
Apparently, the Tigers started with a list of 50 names and have whittled their way down to just ten coaches, all of whom, including Martinez, have interviewed for the job. Other notable candidates include former managers Fredi Gonzalez (Marlins, Braves) and Mike Redman (Marlins), as well as White Sox bench coach Joe McEwing, among others.
As Jon Heyman points out, Martinez could have something of an inside track, given that he’s currently coaching Alex Avila, son of Tigers GM Al Avila, assuming, of course, the two work well together (no reason to guess otherwise, but, well, yeah).
Of course there are many other very qualified candidates including Ron Gardenhire, who previously managed the Twins in that same division and interviewed for the Tigers post before Brad Ausmus won it four years ago. Tough racket, this managerial game.
Of course, it would hurt to lose Martinez, who seems to do quite well in his role for the Cubs, but we absolutely wish him the best of luck. Maybe he’ll finally get his well-earned, well-deserved shot.