Six down, four to go.
The Astros have conducted interviews with six managerial candidates — Dave Clark, Al Pedrique, Ned Yost, Randy Ready, Bob Melvin and Manny Acta — and will conduct four more: Phil Garner and Pete Mackanin on Saturday, and Tim Bogar and Brad Mills Monday.
A lot of you have asked me who I think has the inside track and you’ve probably noticed that I’ve been hesitant to offer up much insight as to who might have an edge. There’s a good reason for that — mainly, it is impossible for me to size up the candidates during a 10-minute media briefing and tell who was the most impressive during his 2 1/2 hour interview session with the club’s decision-makers.
I like Clark’s familiarity with the current club and Pedrique’s wealth of knowledge and array of experiences in the Minor and Major League ranks. I like Yost’s credentials as a former skipper in the Astros’ division and Ready strikes me as approachable, smart and good with people. Melvin has an authoritative air when he walks into a room and obviously has the big league managing credentials on his extensive resume. Acta is hugely impressive, having managed Roy Oswalt, Lance Berkman and Wandy Rodriguez while working his way up through the Astros’ organization. He’s one of those people you just like immediately.
Obviously, I have a bit of familiarity with Clark and Pedrique, since they’re currently working in the Astros’ organization. And we all know what Garner brings to the table, so no mystery there. I know Bogar well from his days playing for the Astros from 1997-2000 and later as a manager in the Minor League system.
The media sessions this week just weren’t designed to determine who would is best for the job. They were simply quick question and answer sessions that didn’t dig too deeply under the surface.
I will say this — it is my feeling that the Astros are leaning toward hiring someone with prior big league managing experience. If that is the case, then there are seven with a leg up: Clark, Pedrique, Yost, Melvin, Acta, Garner and Mackanin.
You’ve been following the search…who do you like?