Ausmus, 44, will travel to Detroit on Sunday to finalize the deal.
The Tigers have called a 4:30 p.m. ET news conference to announce the move.
Ausmus, a former major league catcher, has served as special assistant in the San Diego Padres' front office since 2010. He has never served as a manager or a coach at the big-league level, but did manage the Israeli national team that failed to qualify for the World Baseball Classic in 2012.
Ausmus played on four teams in his career, which began in 1993, most recently with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2010. He played for the Tigers for part of the 1996 season, and again from 1999-2000.
Detroit general manager Dave Dombrowski had confirmed that Ausmus interviewed for the position Monday. Dodgers third-base coach Tim Wallach and Tigers hitting coach Lloyd McClendon also interviewed for the position.
The Tigers needed a new manager after Leyland stepped down following the team's loss to the Boston Red Sox in the AL Championship Series last month.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.