Former Cubs hall of famer Ryne Sandberg was in St. Louis yesterday interviewing for the Cardinals managerial position and the Cardinals also interviewed Jose Oquendo, who has been the third base coach for 10 years. That makes six confirmed candidates for the job. GM John Mozeiliak was hoping to have a manager in place by next Monday’s start of the GM meetings.
Sandberg got the interview off a tip from a scout who saw him manage this past season for Philadelphia’s AAA affiliate. Prior to last season, the 52 year old former second baseman, managed four seasons in the Cubs organization moving up the ranks from A-ball to AAA-ball.
Oquendo is one of four candidates who comes from within the organization, but perhaps has the inside track on the other five because of his time in working and playing for Tony LaRussa. If the Cardinals, who have many of the pieces in place to make a run at the World Series are hoping for continuity, Oquendo is certainly the guy.
If they are looking for experience, then former Boston manager Terry Francona is man. He’s been a proven winner, but a leader on the complete opposite end of the spectrum in terms of how he manages compared to La Russa. When Francona met with club representatives in Cincinnati on Tuesday, he said the meeting was basically talking baseball, which is something he loves to do. He’s well aware of the Cardinals deep tradition and called it a privilege for whoever gets the job.
Mike Matheny, a minor league and spring training instructor has interviewed along with Joe McEwing a former player, now third base coach with the White Sox and Memphis manager Chris Maloney.