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.
The Tigers chose not to bring Ausmus back after his contract expired this past year. In four seasons as their manager, his teams went 314-332, going from a first-place finish in his first year to a last-place finish in 2017.
According to multiple reports, Alex Cora, Bob Geren, Chip Hale, Manny Acta, Kevin Long, Joe McEwing, Sandy 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.
"Leadership is probably the most critical aspect of a manager's resume," Alderson recently said about his search, while downplaying the importance of experience. "We're looking at the ability to do the job as a professional, as a manager at the major league level. As well as the personal qualities that will allow a competent manager to sustain relationships."
Ausmus was hired to lead the Tigers starting in 2014. He won 90 games and the AL Central in his first year with the Tigers. In 2015, during which Detroit blew up their front office and traded Yoenis Cespedes to the Mets, Ausmus went 74-87 and finished in last place. In 2016, after retooling, his team rebounded, going 86-75 and missing the postseason by two games. This past season, though, after starting another half-step rebuild, the Tigers went 64-98 and finished in last place.
I heard last week that Ausmus only wants the Red Sox job, otherwise he'll likely sit out a year or two before taking a new step -- sort of like Terry Francona and Joe Girardi did before landing their current gigs. I was initially skeptical of this rumor, but Heyman's report indicates that it may be accurate. If that's the case, so be it. Look, I think Ausmus would be good here. But, if doesn't want to manage the Mets, he shouldn't manage the Mets. There's no point in wasting anyone's time.
The bigger issue will be if he does, however, interview with the Phillies, who reportedly have interest in him. If that's the case -- if he talks to the Phillies and not Sandy Alderson -- we are going to need to know what it is about the Mets that had him reject them outright. That hasn't happened yet, of course, so it's a non issue. But, if it does, look out...