Obsessive Manager Watch: Venable Interviews with Giants, Espada Thoughts, Girardi and Philly, More

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Obsessive Manager Watch: Venable Interviews with Giants, Espada Thoughts, Girardi and Philly, More

Chicago Cubs

The Cubs’ managerial search, of course, is not occurring in isolation. With still seven teams out there sans manager, there is going to be plenty of overlap in interviews. Joe Espada (Giants and Pirates), Joe Girardi (Phillies and Mets), Gabe Kapler (Giants), and Will Venable (Giants) are all among the Cubs’ interviewees who also reportedly have interest elsewhere.

Some notes on that side of things tonight, including that last one …

  • Cubs first base coach Will Venable, who transitioned from his playing days in San Diego to the Cubs’ front office in late 2017 (and then, soon after, his current coaching post) is one of the younger managerial candidates out there at just 37. The thinking has tended to be that his time might come in the future, but maybe not quite yet. The Cubs did give him an interview, though, and now the Giants have as well:

  • Venable grew up just north of San Francisco, and he also played for the Dodgers while Farhan Zaidi was there, so there are some connections. Still, Mark Kotsay is viewed as a leading candidate for the Giants, or perhaps Kapler (who is not considered a likely hire by the Cubs for the managerial post). Odds are good that Venable will go through this cycle, get some good experience, and then return as a coach on the Cubs’ staff next year.
  • I suppose that merits an additional comment: though many of the Cubs’ coaches will return next year regardless of the managerial hire (probably even moreso if it’s David Ross, who is already in the organization), you can expect there will be at least some turnover. Hopefully, for the sake of some continuity, that doesn’t include a FOURTH set of pitching and hitting coaches in FOUR years. (I tend to think Tommy Hottovy and Anthony Iapoce, respectively, are safe, though.)
  • Also on the Giants: they are interested in Joe Espada, but I’ve not yet heard word of an interview … which makes sense, because Espada seemingly used his two playoff off-days to come interview with the Cubs twice. I suspect that says plenty about his preferred destination.
  • That said, even if Espada does dig the Cubs, and even if the Cubs dig Espada, it’s possible he’ll push for an opportunity to talk to San Francisco before making a final decision.
  • Meanwhile, In New York:

  • Speaking of Girardi and the Phillies:

  • The Phillies might be choosing from among Girardi, Buck Showalter, and Dusty Baker. A who’s who of the best veteran managers available, and extremely contrasted with every other managerial search outside of Anaheim.
  • Speaking of which, Joe Maddon will be back in the spotlight on Thursday’s World Series off-day:

  • Although it doesn’t directly impact the Cubs anymore, I’ll *definitely* be very interested in hearing what Maddon has to say.


Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.