One of the most notable outcomes from the Houston Astros investigation was the one year punishments of Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow and manager AJ Hinch, two of the most prominent names at their respective posts. After the punishment was handed down, Astros owner Jim Crane decided it was best for the future of his franchise to fire the both of them, leaving vacancies.
According to MLB sources a working list of candidates the #Astros are considering in their process to replace manager AJ Hinch includes Joe Espada, Jeff Banister, Dusty Baker, Buck Showalter, Bruce Bochy, Will Venable (Cubs 3rd base coach) & Raúl Ibañez pic.twitter.com/aA9O2n6pGv
— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) January 15, 2020
Jim Crane has said that he will take over baseball operations decisions for the time being, but they are actively searching for a replacement for AJ Hinch. One of the names that has come up in conversation internally for the Astros, is special advisor Raul Ibañez. Ibañez was named in previous managerial searches from other clubs earlier this off-season.
In a recent column for MLB.com, Astros beat writer Brian McTaggart discusses potential targets to fill the void.
Names like Bruce Bochy, Dusty Baker, and John Gibbons are likely candidates. Raul Ibañez was a long-time player in the league and is very well-respected, making it a likely proposition that he finds a job as an MLB manager sooner rather than later.
Here is McTaggart’s specific excerpt in reference to Ibañez:
Ibañez, 47, spent 19 years as a player in the big leagues, mostly with the Mariners. He also played for the Royals, Phillies, Yankees and Angels. Ibañez has been a special advisor with the Dodgers since 2016. He was a finalist for the Rays’ managerial position in 2014 even though he had not officially retired as a player.
Could the Astros look to steal something else from the Dodgers?