Showalter in on Wednesday; Wedge expected to get 2nd interview
First things first: Happy Father's Day to all.
It could be an interesting week at Camden Yards. Buck Showalter will be in Wednesday to interview for the Orioles' managerial job. According to sources, former Cleveland Indians manager Eric Wedge is also expected to get a second interview with team officials. That isn't set yet, but it's likely to happen soon. Wedge did not meet team owner Peter Angelos as Bobby Valentine did, so an interview in Baltimore would give him an opportunity to do just that.
I would suspect that Angelos will speak with Showalter on Wednesday. Because there is a lot of skepticism that Valentine would take this job even if it were offered, I'd say Showalter and Wedge have emerged as the two front-runners. And I know Nick Markakis' recent comments about the team's offensive approach opened some eyes with some high-ranking team officials and reinforced the idea in some minds that the Orioles need a real strong personality in the manager's office.
I spoke to Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail yesterday, and he wouldn't comment on specific names in the manager process, but he did say that the organization's game plan by now should be clear.
"The first group that we’re talking to has experience, has had some success managing and they’re not affiliated with any team," MacPhail said. "That’s the first group we’re talking to. We’ll see how we are and how they feel and then we’ll determine from there."
The Orioles have not asked permission from other teams to interview anybody else, and that includes New York Mets scout Bob Melvin, who still could get an interview later in the process.
Speaking of MacPhail, he became the latest member of the organization to say he had no problem with the recent comments by Markakis.
“I thought what he said was accurate to the extent that we’re not as disciplined or as patient offensive group as one would like,” MacPhail said. “Our record is what our record is. Our productivity levels are what they are. There is no sense trying to say anything else. I think his comments are, by and large, accurate.
“The reason our record is what it is isn’t because [of] Nick Markakis. Since he’s been here for a while and he’s one of the guys we’re building around, it’s not inappropriate for him to say what he thinks on occasion. His effort on the field certainly hasn’t waned. I don’t have a problem with it.”