Astros Reportedly Tab Dusty Baker As Next Manager

Brandon Scott
January 28, 2020 - 10:59 am

Dusty Baker is the top choice to become the next manager for the Houston Astros, according to multiple reports.

The choice was first reported by USA Today.

Baker was one of at least eight candidates to interview for the managerial opening in the days since A.J. Hinch was fired amid the sign-stealing scandal.

Baker spent 19 seasons as a player in Major League Baseball and has managed four teams since the early 1990s; San Francisco Giants (1993-2002), Chicago Cubs (2003-2006), Cincinnati Reds (2008-2013) and the Washington Nationals (2016-2017).

Bob Nightengale, who broke the news for USA Today on Tuesday morning, joined In The Loop to discuss the potential hire.

"They definitely got the right guy. He was the perfect choice. For all the things Dusty's gone through -- four different teams, going through everything in life -- he's a guy who can handle it. They need a guy who can help insulate this team from all of the outside noise. It's going to be a nightmare for them on the road. So you had to get an experience guy."

Nightengale said he anticipates "a very short term contract" for Baker, who is 70 years old.

Later in the morning, MLB on FOX reporter Ken Rosenthal reported Baker and the Astros were in discussions about the position but no deal had yet been completed and other candidates had not yet been informed.

RADIO.COM MLB insider Jon Heyman reported the Astros reached out to Baker about the job, but there had been no evidence of an agreement with him just yet.

When Baker was in town last week interviewing for the position, he told reporters at the airport that he's always enjoyed watching the Astros play. Baker said it would be a privilege and an honor to manage the team.

Baker was asked if it would be a tough situation to come into, given the weight of the sign-stealing scandal. In addition to Hinch's firing, Astros owner Jim Crane also dismissed Jeff Luhnow, who had been the architect of the Astros' success over the past several years, including the 2017 World Series champions.

"Yeah, I'm not going to say it's not (going to be tough)," Baker said. "But it's a lot easier than being a world leader at this point in time, you know what I mean. If you want to feel some pressure, you just be a world leader. I'm just hoping to bring some love back to baseball, some integrity to the game. I think I've got relative respect in the game.

"And there's something missing. I need a championship and I'd like to bring a championship to this team and this city."

This story will be updated...

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