Add Brad Ausmus, Rick Renteria to Tigers managerial list
The Tigers have reportedly received permission from the Padres to interview two of their employees for the managerial job. One, Brad Ausmus, has been expected for a while. Another, Rick Renteria, was not, though he probably should have been.
Both are in line to interview with the Tigers this week in Detroit, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reported Sunday night.
Ausmus, a special assistant in the Padres front office, has been a hot name in this search since the day the job opened up. He has neither managed nor coached in the big leagues. His only managerial experience at the pro level was Team Israel in the most recent World Baseball Classic. But his 18-year career behind the plate — three of those seasons in Detroit — and his Dartmouth education are seen as a foundation. Those who know him from his playing and post-playing careers rave about his people skills.
“Great mind for the game,” one AL official said, “and an ability to communicate in layman, PHD, management terms. … Low-energy look but a fierce competitor, humorous but tough, all lends to an ability to find everyone’s button that needs to be pushed.”
Ausmus, who will turn 45 next April, goes against Dombrowski’s remarks last week about previous managerial experience being a plus, but others have suggested an experienced bench coach could help him make up for it. Still, he’d be coming into a win-now job where an adjustment year is not really an option.
Renteria, who will turn 52 in December, has been on the Padres coaching staff the past six seasons, the last three of them as Bud Black’s bench coach. He, too, managed in the WBC, leading Mexico. He also managed for five years in the Padres farm system, and four in the Marlins organization while Dave Dombrowski was the general manager there. Renteria has drawn a lot of buzz for the Cubs managerial opening, and he interviewed for the Mariners job last week.
Add Ausmus and Renteria to Lloyd McClendon and Tim Wallach, both of whom interviewed last week, and the Tigers are up to four candidates for Jim Leyland’s old gig. Of those four, McClendon is the only one who has managed in the Majors before.