The Cubs’ hunt for a new manager may soon be going into Phase 2. Team officials have had multiple interviews with at least two of the current candidates.
Cubs Triple-A manager Ryne Sandberg and former Indians skipper Eric Wedge have each had multiple interviews.
Meanwhile, interim manager Mike Quade may not have a formal interview with Jim Hendry due to the fact that Hendry and Quade met 15 to 20 times after games during the time Quade managed the team after taking over for Lou Piniella on Aug. 23.
The team’s plan is to have each prime candidate meet with chairman Tom Ricketts before Hendry brings his final recommendation to be considered by the Cubs’ owner.
Quade’s reputation has been enhanced to the point where at least one team inquired informally about his availability to interview for a vacant post, according to a Major League source. It’s unknown whether it’s the Blue Jays at this point. However, the Bluejays’ process is including upwards of 20 candidates.
Wedge has had two formal interviews with Hendry and one formal interview session that was conducted by assistant GM Randy Bush. Sandberg met with Hendry at the end of August when Hendry made a special trip to Albuquerque to watch the Triple-A team. Hendry also traveled to Arizona in September to have a formal interview with Sandberg.
Although Joe Girardi’s name has been attached to the Cubs’ job, there hasn’t been any contact between the two sides at this point. The Cubs – or any Major League team – are prohibited from contacting anyone under contract with another team without express written consent by that team. Girardi’s contract with the New York Yankees expires after the season.
Former Seattle manager Don Wakamatsu and former Mariners and D-backs manager Bob Melvin both had interviews with Hendry as well.
On Thursday, a Milwaukee radio station reported that Cubs broadcaster Bob Brenly was closed to being named the Brewers’ manager. Brewers GM Doug Melvin denied in at least two reports that the team was close to making a hire.