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2017 Mets Manager Search

Cleveland Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway (Kevin Sousa)
Cleveland Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway (Kevin Sousa)

The Mets will introduce 42-year-old Mickey Callaway as the 21st manager in team history during a press conference at Citi Field on Monday at 4 p.m.

Callaway beat out Kevin Long, Joe McEwing, Manny Acta, and Mark DeRosa for the job.

Here are our thoughts on Callaway, who will inherit a team that expects to rebound from an extremely disappointing 2017 season and contend in 2018...

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BNNY: Mets hire Mickey Callaway 00:04:00
Tonight on Baseball Night in New York, MLB Insider Anthony McCarron shares his thoughts on the addition of Mickey Callaway to the Mets.

Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway reportedly accepted an offer to become the Mets' next manager, according to ESPN's Buster Olney.

Callaway, who has been with Cleveland since 2013, will sign a three-year deal once it's finalized, according to FanRag Sports' Jon Heyman.

Callaway helped develop star pitchers Corey Kluber, Carlos Carrasco and Danny Salazar in his tenure with the Indians and would inherit a Mets pitching staff that includes Noah Syndergaard, Jacob deGromSteven Matz and Matt Harvey.

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The Sandy Bunch: Mickey Callaway 00:00:37
SNY.tv takes a look at Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway as a candidate to be the next Mets manager.

This post was originally publised October 9, 2017...

For a team whose pitching staff collapsed as epically as the Mets' did in 2017, it makes sense to consider bringing in a manager with pitching expertise. And after helping the Indians put together one of the best group of arms in baseball, that's one metric Mickey Callaway might very well lead the league in.

Since taking on the role of pitching coach in Cleveland in 2013, the pitching staff there made a complete 180. After posting a major league worst ERA in 2012, the Indians have led the American League in ERA every year since then and have put up MLB-best numbers in strikeouts and wins above replacement.

Under Callaway's tutelage, they have developed stars in Danny Salazar, Carlos Carrasco, and Corey Kluber, who may be looking at his second Cy Young Award this year. In many ways, the Indians have reached the heights of pitching that the Mets were expected to, and Callaway receives a lot of the credit. It's also noteworthy that, despite throwing hard, they have generally stayed healthy...

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New York Mets hitting coach Kevin Long (Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Mets hitting coach Kevin Long (Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports)

The Mets are expected to choose their new manager soon -- perhaps as early as this weekend -- reports Joel Sherman of the NY Post, who says the team wants to make an announcement before the World Series starts on Tuesday.

Mets hitting coach Kevin Long and Mariners third base coach Manny Acta are the frontrunners for the job, according to Sherman. The Mets interviewed Long and Acta within the last week.

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Danny Abriano, SNY.tv | Twitter

The Mets have started conducting their managerial interviews. Here is a look at the names that are in the mix...

Kevin Long, Mets hitting coach

The 50-year-old Long, who expressed his interest in the job to Alderson, does not have any big league managerial experience. He was the hitting coach for the Yankees from 2007 to 2014, before taking the same role with the Mets prior to the 2015 season. He is returning to the Mets in 2018, but it isn't yet known what his role will be.

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Jul 3, 2015; Sandy Alomar (15) looks on from the dugout at PNC Park. Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 3, 2015; Sandy Alomar (15) looks on from the dugout at PNC Park. Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets may still interview Indians bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr., as the team continues its search for a new manager, Mike Puma of the NY Post tweeted Thursday afternoon.

Alomar, 51, began his coaching career as a catching instructor for the Mets in 2008. He joined Cleveland's coaching staff in 2009 and was reportedly a finalist to manage the Blue Jays in 2011.

He was interim manager of the Indians for six games in 2012 after the team fired Manny Acta, who the Mets reportedly interviewed earlier this week.

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DNL: Who should take over Mets? 00:01:13
The DNL panel debates whether or not Kevin Long should be the next manager of the Mets or if the team should look somewhere else.

The least you should know, according to published reports...

  • Alex Cora is considered the frontrunner to manage the Red Sox.
  • The Mets interviewed Cora on Tuesday.
  • The Mets may still be interested in interviewing Sandy Alomar, Jr.
  • The Tigers will hire Ron Gardenhire to be their next manager.
  • Joe McEwing (who also interviewed with the Tigers) interviewed on Wednedsay, and Manny Acta interviewed on Tuesday.
  • Mickey Callaway met the Mets on Wednesday.
  • Kevin Long interviewed last week.
  • Brad Ausmus interviewed with Boston, but declined to talk with the Mets.
  • Bob Geren and Chip Hale are not being considered.

Here's the latest on each active candidate....

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Oct 14, 2008; Cora (left), Dustin Pedroia (center) and Kevin Youkilis (20) during the seventh inning of game four of the ALCS at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Stew Milne-US PRESSWIRE
Oct 14, 2008; Cora (left), Dustin Pedroia (center) and Kevin Youkilis (20) during the seventh inning of game four of the ALCS at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Stew Milne-US PRESSWIRE

In addition to the Mets, the Red Sox are also actively searching for a new manager and may only be considering three candidates.

According to local and national reports, Astros bench coach Alex Cora is considered the frontrunner.

The Sox reportedly interviewed Cora and former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus this past weekend in New York. They interviewed D-backs bench coach and former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire earlier today, according to the Boston Herald.

Before making a final decision, Boston is expected to conduct a second round of interviews, NBCSports.com's Evan Drellich tweeted earlier this week.

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The Sandy Bunch: Manny Acta 00:00:39
SNY.tv takes a look at former Nationals and Indians manager Manny Acta as a candidate to be the next Mets manager.

Manny Acta interviewed for the Mets' managerial opening on Tuesday and is considered a "serious candidate" for the job, a source told Mike Puma of the NY Post.

"He is going to walk in the interview and kick [butt], because he is smart," another source told Puma. "He knows analytics, he understands scouting and he's old school. He's organized, prepared, works well with the coaching staff and front office."

However, the same source said Acta "can't handle controversy," and questioned whether he's cut out to be a manager in New York.

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Chicago White Sox manager Robin Ventura looks on before the game against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. (Jeffrey Becker/USA TODAY Sports)
Chicago White Sox manager Robin Ventura looks on before the game against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. (Jeffrey Becker/USA TODAY Sports)

The Mets have removed former White Sox manager Robin Ventura from consideration for their managerial opening after he revealed he is not interested in managing, according to the NY Post.

"I'm not pursuing any of the openings," Ventura told the Post by text message.

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The Sandy Bunch: Joe McEwing 00:00:40
SNY.tv takes a look at White Sox bench coach Joe McEwing as a candidate to be the next Mets manager.

The parade of Mets managerial candidates has included a number of familiar faces, but perhaps none more familiar than Joe McEwing, who spent five years in Queens as a bench player.

While fans' affection for McEwing often outpaced his skill on the field, he has spent the years since his 2008 retirement in a variety of coaching roles with the White Sox organization, and his good reputation has earned him an interview with the Mets this week.

McEwing was in many ways the quintessential utility player. In his five seasons with the Mets, "Super Joe" saw time at every position except pitcher and catcher. He eked out a league average batting line in only one season, but was a solid defender and was beloved by fans and teammates alike for his scrappy play and positive attitude. Prior to his release early in 2005, he had served as something of a mentor to a young David Wright, who raved about his character and bemoaned the loss of his friend and teacher...

Tags: 2017 Mets Manager Search, David Wright, Maggie Wiggin
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New York Mets hitting coach Kevin Long (Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Mets hitting coach Kevin Long (Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports)

Mets hitting coach Kevin Long is reportedly considered the favorite to become the franchise's next manager, according to the Bergen Record's Bob Klapisch.

The Mets already interviewed Long, who has been the team's hitting coach for the past three seasons, and plan to conduct interviews with several other candidates throughout the week.

They will interview Astros bench coach Alex Cora on Tuesday and Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway on Wednesday. Mariners third base coach Manny Acta will interview with the team later this week, and former Mets infielder Joe McEwing also plans to interview with New York.

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\Cleveland Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway visits starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco in the third inning at Progressive Field. (David Richard/USA TODAY Sports)
\Cleveland Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway visits starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco in the third inning at Progressive Field. (David Richard/USA TODAY Sports)

The Mets will interview Cleveland Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway on Wednesday, according to the New York Post's Mike Puma.

Callaway is one of several candidates on GM Sandy Alderson's list of possible replacements for Terry Collins, including Alex Cora, Bob Geren, Manny ActaChip HaleKevin LongJoe McEwing and Sandy Alomar Jr.

The Mets have already interviewed Long, will interview Cora on Tuesday and will interview Acta later this week. McEwing plans to interview with New York later this week as well.

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Detroit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus looks on during the ninth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. (Jeffrey Becker/USA TODAY Sports)
Detroit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus looks on during the ninth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. (Jeffrey Becker/USA TODAY Sports)

Former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus declined to interview for the Mets' managerial job, reports Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.

In their search to find a new manager, the Mets talked at least once with Ausmus, Heyman reported last week.

Ausmus interviewed for the Red Sox' managerial opening on Monday, reports Chad Jennings of the Boston Herald. The Phillies are also reportedly interested in Ausmus.

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General view as the Mets and Phillies stand for the national anthem on opening day game at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
General view as the Mets and Phillies stand for the national anthem on opening day game at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets reportedly started interviewing candidates last week to be their new manager. 

According to multiple reports, Alex Cora, Bob Geren, Chip Hale, Manny Acta, Kevin Long, Joe McEwingSandy Alomar Jr., and Mickey Callway are all on Sandy Alderson's list of candidates, with first round interviews expected to be finished by the end of this week.

Here's where things stand...

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 (Orlando Ramirez)
(Orlando Ramirez)

Astros bench coach Alex Cora will interview with the Mets this week, according to Newsday's Marc Carig, and is expected to meet with the Red Sox to interview for their managerial vacancy, according to The Boston Globe's Dan Shaughnessy

While Cora is also reportedly drawing interest from the Philadelphia Phillies and Detroit Tigers, he is considered Boston's top managerial candidate, according to The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal.

A 14-year MLB veteran, Cora has been a GM and manager in the Puerto Rican Winter League and served as the country's GM in the World Baseball Classic this spring. He interviewed for several managerial positions last winter, but ultimately joined Houston's coaching staff last November.

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Dodgers outfielder and former Met Curtis Granderson believes Mets' hitting coach Kevin Long has what it takes to succeed in a managerial role. 

Long recently interviewed for the Mets' manager position on Friday as the team continues to look for Terry Collins' successor. Among the wide array of candidates are Brad Ausmus, Alex Cora, Robin Ventura, and Joe McEwing to name a few. 

Granderson, though, feels that Long can make an impact in the manager role despite his lack of experience...

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Chicago White Sox third base coach Joe McEwing looks on against the Kansas City Royals at Surprise Stadium. (Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports)
Chicago White Sox third base coach Joe McEwing looks on against the Kansas City Royals at Surprise Stadium. (Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports)

The Mets plan to interview Joe McEwing for their open managerial position within the next few days, reports Mike Puma of the New York Post

MLB.com reported earlier this month that the Tigers were interested in McEwing filling their managerial vacancy.

McEwing, who has no big league managerial experience, has coached with the White Sox since the 2012 season. A former Met, McEwing became the hitting coach for the Triple-A Charlotte Knights in 2008. One season later, he was named Manager of the Year for his work with the Class-A Winston-Salem Dash in the South Atlantic League. In 2011, he came back to Charlotte to manage the club. 

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New York Mets hitting coach Kevin Long (Kim Klement)
New York Mets hitting coach Kevin Long (Kim Klement)

The Mets interviewed Kevin Long for their managerial opening on Friday, reports Mike Puma of the NY Post.

The 50-year-old Long, who expressed his interest in the job to Mets GM Sandy Alderson, does not have any big league managerial experience. He was the hitting coach for the Yankees from 2007 to 2014, before taking the same role with the Mets prior to the 2015 season. He is returning to the Mets in 2018, but it isn't yet known what his role will be.

The Mets recently began conducting their managerial interviews. The opening with the Red Sox and questions surrounding Yankees manager Joe Girardi are expected to impact their search, which you can read more about here...

In addition to Long, Alderson's reported list of potential candidates also includes Yankees manager Joe Girardi, Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway, former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus, former Mets players Robin VenturaJoe McEwing, Sandy Alomar Jr.Alex Cora, and former coaches Bob Geren and Chip Hale >> To learn more about each reported candidate, click here.

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Will Girardi manage the Mets? 00:03:43
The DNL panel examines the possibility of Yankees manager Joe Girardi leaving the Bronx Bombers to manage the Mets in Queens.

The Mets have started interviewing candidates to be their next manager, a source with knowledge of the process recently told Newsday's Marc Carig.

In the days before and after the season, I'm told Mets GM Sandy Alderson and his staff internally reviewed a list of up to 15 potential candidates.

My understanding is, after pre-screening each person, talking about them with people outside the organization and gauging interest, that list has been whittled down to between six and 10 viable options, all of whom will have been formally interviewed before the end of next week.

Tags: 2017 Mets Manager Search, Matthew Cerrone
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Oct 6, 2017; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway (13) visits the mound against the New York Yankees during the first inning in game two of the 2017 ALDS at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports (Ken Blaze)
Oct 6, 2017; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway (13) visits the mound against the New York Yankees during the first inning in game two of the 2017 ALDS at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports (Ken Blaze)

The Mets are showing interest in Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway as a candidate for their managerial opening, sources told Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports.

Callaway is also receiving interest from the Phillies, who he will interview with for their managerial opening, according to Paul Hoynes of Cleveland.com.

The 42-year-old Callaway became the Indians' pitching coach in 2013 in what was his first major league coaching job. Before moving into that role, he was the team's minor league coordinator.

 

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The Sandy Bunch: Bob Geren 00:00:39
SNY.tv takes a look at Dodgers bench coach Bob Geren as a candidate to be the next Mets manager.

When Terry Collins's position officially opened, it was no surprise that Bob Geren's name was one of the first mentioned. With past managing experience and prior ties to the team, he is a classic Sandy Alderson managerial candidate, though whether he will be their final choice remains to be seen.

While his career lacked the longevity of Alex Cora's, Geren saw his share of playing time, spending four years catching for the Yankees, and one more for San Diego. After retiring at age 32, he took on managing roles for Red Sox minor league teams, before moving over to the Athletics organization in similar roles. It was in Oakland that he got his first shot at the major leagues, first as bullpen coach and bench coach and then as manager, beginning in 2007.

Geren's time as manager of the A's was a mixed bag. He was given mediocre teams to work with, which generally performed as expected, but the front office consistently expressed confidence in him, extending his contract and twice picking up options on him. In 2011, though, there were public complaints from current and former players about his communication and distribution of playing time. Just two weeks later, following a brutal losing streak, he was let go...

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The Sandy Bunch: Brad Ausmus 00:00:36
SNY.tv takes a look at former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus as a candidate to be the next Mets manager.

Former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus is hoping to land a new job managing in baseball, MLB reporter Ken Rosenthal said Tuesday on the MLB Network.

"He is eager to work again, right away," Rosenthal said after speaking to Ausmus.

Previous Reports...

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Potential Mets managers, according to the NY Post. Credit: USA Today Images
Potential Mets managers, according to the NY Post. Credit: USA Today Images

For the second time since taking over as GM in 2010, Sandy Alderson is looking for a new manager.

"We have a very long list," Alderson said earlier this month. "We will get it shortened after we've had internal discussions and then talks with people outside the organization."

In the last week or so I have talked with several MLB insiders, as well as reporters, fans and current and former players and coaches.

Tags: 2017 Mets Manager Search, Matthew Cerrone
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Tampa Bay Rays center fielder Mallex Smith (0) is congratulated by third base coach Charlie Montoyo (25) (Kim Klement)
Tampa Bay Rays center fielder Mallex Smith (0) is congratulated by third base coach Charlie Montoyo (25) (Kim Klement)

While most names connected to the Mets managerial search have had some past affiliation with the team, one that might be new to Mets fans is Charlie Montoyo, current third base coach for the Rays.

On-field, Montoyo's career was short and unmemorable. He spent nine years in the minors as an infielder and saw major league action in just four games with the Expos in 1993. He retired at age 30 in 1996 before launching his career as a coach, with the brand new Tampa Bay Devil Rays.

Working at every level of the Rays organization, Montoyo has built an impressive resume. Most notably, he spent eight years as their Triple-A manager, leading the Durham Bulls to six division championships and two league championships. He holds the team record for most managerial wins and has been inducted to the International League Hall of Fame in recognition of his success in that role, which exposed him to a lot of the young talent that fueled the Rays' playoff runs beginning in 2008...

Tags: 2017 Mets Manager Search, Maggie Wiggin
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Will Girardi manage the Mets? 00:03:43
The DNL panel examines the possibility of Yankees manager Joe Girardi leaving the Bronx Bombers to manage the Mets in Queens.

ESPN's Buster Olney believes Joe Girardi's tenure as Yankees manager will end after the season.

"If I had to guess, I think this is it for him," Olney told ESPN Radio early Monday.

Girardi's four-year contract will expire at the end of this season and his name has come up in the Mets' managerial discussions, reports Mike Puma of the NY Post.

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The Sandy Bunch: Kevin Long 00:00:36
SNY.tv takes a look at Mets hitting coach Kevin Long as a candidate to be the next Mets manager.

There's a lot of skepticism at the true impact a hitting coach can have on a swing decades in the making, but one of the few who has undeniably made his mark is Kevin Long. That talent has made him invaluable to the Mets and has pushed his name near the top of the list of managerial candidates.

Long has had a significant effect on Mets hitting since joing the team in 2015. He translated the organizational focus on plate discipline -- not necessarily with the goal of drawing walks, but with the goal of finding a pitch to drive -- in a way that clicked for many of their hitters.

Curtis Granderson, who had sung Long's praises since they worked together in the Bronx, rebounded from a rough Mets debut to put together one of the best seasons of his career. Yoenis Cespedes, Neil Walker, and Asdrubal Cabrera both saw big spikes in on base percentage working under Long as well. And Long's intense work with Daniel Murphy certainly seems to have paid off as well, albeit not for the Mets...

Tags: 2017 Mets Manager Search, Asdrubal Cabrera, Brett Gardner, Curtis Granderson, Lucas Duda, Neil Walker, Yoenis Cespedes, Maggie Wiggin
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Sandy Alomar, Jr. is receiving "strong consideration" to be interviewed for the Mets' managerial opening, reports Mike Puma of the NY Post.

Alomar, 51, is the first base coach for the Cleveland Indians, who are currently facing the Yankees in the ALDS. He began his coaching career as a catching instructor for the Mets in 2008 and 2009. He has been on Cleveland's coaching staff since 2009, and was reportedly a finalist for the Blue Jays' managerial job prior to the 2011 season.

He was interim manager of the Indians for six games in 2012 after the team fired Manny Acta...

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The Sandy Bunch: Robin Ventura 00:00:35
SNY.tv takes a look at former Mets third baseman Robin Ventura as a candidate to be Mets manager in 2018.

Robin Ventura and Joe McEwing are reportedly on Sandy Alderson's list of potential candidates to replace Terry Collins, who announced last week that he was stepping down as the team's manager.

According to Bobby Valentine, Alderson is smart to consider both men...

"There's a few hundred guys that I have managed, but these two are in a special class of people," Valentine said Thursday, according to the NY Post. "I think it is a wonderful step in the right direction, when you are hiring for any position, that you have the opportunity to hire a good person. I think great people make great leaders."

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 (Jerome Miron)
(Jerome Miron)

Alex Cora would be a great choice to manage the Mets, former Mets outfielder and current Astros DH Carlos Beltran said Tuesday, according to the NY Post.

Cora, 44, is among several candidates reportedly being considered by Sandy Alderson, who said Tuesday that he hopes to begin conducting preliminary interviews as early as this week.

In his first year coaching in professional baseball, Cora is working under Astros manager A.J. Hinch as the team's bench coach. Houston won 101 games this season and will face the Red Sox in the ALDS starting today.

According to Beltran, as bench coach, Cora played a significant role in helping build team chemistry and improving how players communicate with the coaching staff...

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White Sox coach Joe McEwing
White Sox coach Joe McEwing

The Tigers plan to soon interview Joe McEwing and Fredi Gonzalez for their managerial opening, Jason Beck of MLB.com recently reported on Twitter.

McEwing is reportedly on Sandy Alderson's list of potential candidates to replace Terry Collins, who announced last week that he was stepping down as the team's manager. Collins accepted an advisory position in Alderson's front office.

The Tigers recently announced that they will not be giving a new contract to Brad Ausmus, who had been managing the team since 2014...

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The Sandy Bunch: Alex Cora 00:00:38
SNY.tv takes a look at former Met and current Astros bench coach Alex Cora as a candidate for the Mets managerial position.

Of the many names being floated as potential future managers for the Mets, one that has garnered a lot of interest is Alex Cora. Expected to interview soon, his youth and relative lack of managerial experience may put him at a slight disadvantage, but he has a lot to offer a team in transition.

Cora is not a new name to Mets fans -- his 14-year stint in the majors included a brief stop in Queens. Already near the end of a mediocre at best on-field career, his performance with the Mets was quite poor (a .597 OPS over 2 years), but even then, in 2010, he received raves for his clubhouse presence. And there was a widespread assumption he would eventually go into managing.

Since retiring from professional baseball in 2012, Cora spent some time broadcasting, but most notably joined the Astros as a bench coach for the 2017 season...

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Indians coach Mickey Callaway, Dodgers exec. Gabe Kapler and former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus. Credit: USA Today Images
Indians coach Mickey Callaway, Dodgers exec. Gabe Kapler and former Tigers manager Brad Ausmus. Credit: USA Today Images

Mets GM Sandy Alderson announced Sunday that, for the second time since taking over as GM in 2010, he will spearhead the team's search for a new manager.

According to Alderson's public statements and previous interviews, he is clearly looking for a strong leader and someone that is receptive to analytics and implementing information from the front office.

I've also heard from people familiar with the process that he's looking for someone with an even-keel personality that is poised, can relate to the modern player, is media savvy and can run a bullpen.

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Wally Backman (Andy Marlin/USA Today Sports Images)
Wally Backman (Andy Marlin/USA Today Sports Images)

Wally Backman left the Mets in Sept. 2016 to pursue other opportunities in baseball, though he later told the Bergen Record's Bob Klapisch that he resigned before being fired.

Backman, 58, was unable to find a job in MLB this past winter. Instead, he was hired to manage Monclova of the Mexican League, but was fired after 42 games due in part to not speaking Spanish. He was soon hired to be the bench coach for rival Pericos Dr Puebla, which qualified for the Mexican League's postseason.

Backman's split from the Mets was attributed to reported disagreements with Alderson, which often ranged from the distribution of playing time to public comments about the organization, to lineup construction, sources later told Newsday's David Lennon.

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 (Kim Klement)
(Kim Klement)

The Mets will retain Kevin Long for the 2018 season, though his title for 2018 is not yet known. 

Long, who has been the Mets' hitting coach since 2015, is interested in replacing Terry Collins as manager.

"Kevin Long has expressed an interest in possibly interviewing for the manager's position, and that certainly will be given strong consideration," Mets GM Sandy Alderson said on Tuesday.

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