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Martinez interested in Astros' managerial job

ST. PETERSBURG -- Rays bench coach Dave Martinez found himself on the short list of candidates when the Astros were looking for a manager two years ago, and he believes he's ready for another shot at the job this time around.

After dismissing Bo Porter on Monday, Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow said the search for a new manager would begin immediately. Luhnow has said he is willing to hire a candidate with no previous managerial experience, and he'd take another look at some of the candidates who interviewed in 2012.

Martinez said on Wednesday that he hasn't heard from Houston since Porter was dismissed, but he would seem to fit the job description.

"Right now, as far as I'm concerned, it's just speculation. I heard my name was thrown out there, and I welcome all interviews. It would be a great opportunity," Martinez said. "I interviewed for them a couple years ago, and they had good baseball people, very creative minds over there, and I kind of like that whole situation over there. Right now, my concern is being the bench coach for the Tampa Bay Rays and hopefully we win as many games as possible this month."

Martinez, who will turn 50 later this month, has previously interviewed with the Indians, Blue Jays, Astros and Cubs. He said he learned something different during each interview process, but, "Hopefully the next one I have, I get the job.

"I really feel that I'm ready. There's no doubt," Martinez said. "Obviously my heart is here with the Rays right now, and I want to finish up strong and see what happens here the rest of the month of September. If the opportunity arises, I'm ready. I've been ready. I've been close the last couple interviews. I think it'll happen soon."

Martinez is in his seventh season as Joe Maddon's bench coach and said he's learned from watching how Maddon interacts with executive vice president Andrew Friedman and the club's analytically inclined front office.

"I learned from being here over the years that it takes a whole organization to become a championship team," Martinez said. "I want to build relationship like that wherever I go -- with the GM, with the radio announcers, with media, with ownership, with fans, players, all that stuff. It all matters."

Martinez said he wouldn't be deterred by the reports about Porter's rocky relationship with the Astros' front office, noting that he got along with Luhnow and owner Jim Crane "great" when they met. He said the Astros remind him of where the Rays were a few years ago and that they have "an unbelievable future ahead of them.

"I think their organization's heading in the right direction," Martinez said.

Adam Berry is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry.
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