Phils in no rush, could hire manager next week

Club expected to finish first round of interviews, meet with finalists

October 24th, 2017
Phillies GM Matt Klentak and his staff have been conducting the first round of interviews for the manager opening. (AP)Wilfredo Lee/AP

PHILADELPHIA -- The Mets, Red Sox and Tigers have hired new managers within the past week, but that does not mean the Phillies need to accelerate their timetable to find Pete Mackanin's replacement.

The only other team currently looking for a new manager is the Nationals, who surprised many in baseball by dismissing Dusty Baker on Friday. The Phillies and Nationals seem unlikely to draw from the same pool of candidates.

But the Phillies are inching closer to a resolution. It is possible they will hire their next manager before the end of the World Series presented by YouTube TV, which begins Tuesday night and is scheduled to conclude Nov. 1, if it reaches a Game 7. At the latest, the Phillies are expected to have a manager in place before the GM Meetings, which begin Nov. 13 in Orlando.

It is believed the Phillies will conclude a first round of interviews with external candidates this week. Sources told last week that the Phillies interviewed Giants third-base coach Phil Nevin, Dodgers player development director Gabe Kapler, A's third-base coach Chip Hale and former Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway, whom the Mets hired Monday to replace former manager Terry Collins. reported Monday that Mariners bench coach Manny Acta also interviewed.

Once the Phillies conclude the first round of interviews, they are expected to have a second round with finalists.

Obviously, there will be external candidates in that group, but it would not be a surprise to see the Phillies bring back at least one internal candidate. They interviewed Triple-A Lehigh Valley manager Dusty Wathan, front-office advisor Jorge Velandia and third-base coach Juan Samuel two weeks ago.

The Mets had planned a second round of interviews, but they became so enamored with Callaway that they scrapped that and offered him the job after having lunch with Mets ownership. The Red Sox hired Astros bench coach on Sunday after interviewing only three candidates. The Phillies had interest in Cora, but it seemed from the beginning that Cora would end up with Boston.

The Tigers hired former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, who also interviewed with the Red Sox.