The Houston Astros have found a skipper.
Dusty Baker is set to become Houston’s new manager, USA TODAY’s Bob Nightengale reported Tuesday, citing a person familiar with the hiring.
This comes two weeks after the Astros fired AJ Hinch in wake of Major League Baseball disciplining the organization for its role in a 2017 sign-stealing scandal. Astros owner Jim Crane also announced the firing of general manager Jeff Luhnow at the time of Hinch’s dismissal.
Three managers relinquished their respective positions in the aftermath of MLB announcing its ruling on the Astros cheating scandal earlier this month. In addition to Hinch’s firing, the Boston Red Sox mutually parted ways with Alex Cora and the New York Mets mutually parted ways with Carlos Beltran.
The Mets since have hired Luis Rojas to become their new manager, while the Red Sox remain without a manager two weeks before pitchers and catchers are scheduled to report to Boston’s spring training complex in Fort Myers, Fla.
Baker, 70, arrives in Houston with ample experience, having managed the San Francisco Giants, Chicago Cubs, Cincinnati Reds and Washington Nationals. He’s never won a World Series at any of his four previous stops, but he is a three-time National League Manager of the Year.
Baker most recently managed the Nationals in 2016 and 2017. Washington won 95 and 97 games, respectively, in Baker’s two seasons at the helm, but the Nats were eliminated from the MLB postseason in the NL Division Series both years and the organization thus decided to move on in favor of Dave Martinez.
Baker has totaled nine postseason berths, seven division titles and an NL pennant across 22 seasons as a big league manager.
UPDATE (12:20 p.m. ET): The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal says no official decision has been made.
Dusty Baker is in discussions with the #Astros about their managing position, sources tell The Athletic. No deal has been completed. Other candidates have not yet been informed. Baker is the Astros? choice, per @BNightengale.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 28, 2020