While the Chicago Cubs wait for a decision from Joe Girardi on whether or not he has accepted the New York Yankees’ contract offer, the team is moving into the next stage of their managerial search.
According to David Kaplan of CSN Chicago, former Washington Nationals and Cleveland Indians manager Manny Acta is currently in Chicago interviewing with Cubs’ president of baseball operations Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer.
Throughout the duration of the initial process of the Cubs’ managerial search, Acta was believed to be the third option behind Girardi and current Indians’ bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr.
That no longer appears to be the case as the report indicates that the Cubs do not have an interest in Alomar Jr to be the team’s next manager.
“From what I’ve heard, Alomar is not getting that job,” the source said. “He is a good baseball man but he is not in the top group that the Cubs are looking at.”-CSN Chicago
It is interesting that Alomar Jr is not at the top of the Cubs’ candidate list. Speculation over the past week seemed to go against that belief as many were touting the current Indians’ bench coach for his communications skills as well as his leadership qualities. The Cubs are apparently putting much stock into their notion that whoever they hire needs to have some managerial experience.
Acta certainly has managerial experience, though, that would seemingly go against his chances at being hired to be the next Cubs manager. Acta began his managerial with the Washington Nationals in 2007. Acta’s best season with the Nationals was his first season as he managed the team to 73 victories in the 2007 season. After struggling in 2008, Acta was fired from his position as Nationals manager 87 games into the 2009 season.
Acta resurfaced on the managerial circuit in 2010 with the Cleveland Indians. Acta’s best season with the Indians came in 2011 when the team finished the season with a record of 80-82. Acta was relieved of his managerial duties with Indians with 6 games remaining in the 2012 season.
In his six years of managing, Acta possesses a winning percentage of .418.
Acta is not the first interview for the Cubs’ managerial opening. The Chicago Cubs’ front office has already interviewed former Arizona Diamondbacks manager A.J. Hinch. Hinch struggled while managing the Diamondbacks but is credited for his development skills. Hinch is currently serving as the vice president of scouting for the San Diego Padres–a position that was given to him by current Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer. In addition to Hinch, the Cubs are interested in another Padres’ employee. The report by Kaplan indicates that Padres’ bench coach Rick Renteria is a candidate for the Cubs’ managerial position as well.
The Cubs are implementing a wise strategy. In the event that the team is unable to land Girardi, the team has already begun their process of speaking with prospective candidates. Meaning the team is not letting the wait for Girardi’s decision delay their process.