For the first time in more than a decade, the San Francisco Giants are on the hunt for a new manager. Future Hall of Famer Bruce Bochy retired at season’s end, vacating a position he had occupied since 2007. Over the interim period, he won three World Series titles and finished with a 1,052-1,054 regular-season mark.
It’s unclear who Farhan Zaidi, now in his first full offseason as the Giants’ main decision maker, will hire when all is said and done. But we are gaining insight into who Zaidi intends to consider.
On Saturday, MLB Network’s Jon Heyman reported that Zaidi and the Giants will interview former Philadelphia Phillies manager Gabe Kapler. Kapler, dismissed earlier in the week, is familiar with Zaidi from their shared time together in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization.
Zaidi has already talked to Pedro Grifol, the Kansas City Royals‘ quality control and catching coach, as well as internal candidates Ron Wotus and Hensley Meulens. Oakland Athletics bench coach Mark Kotsay is also apparently in the running.
No matter how you slice it, Zaidi has assembled a diverse collection of candidates. Kapler is the only one of the bunch with actual managerial experience at the big-league level, yet Wotus has been a member of the Giants’ coaching staff since 1998; Meulens nearly landed the New York Yankees gig back when they hired Aaron Boone in late 2017; and Grifol, for his part, is considered a candidate for the Royals’ open gig, though that may not be filled until later in the offseason.
It stands to reason Zaidi may choose to further expand his candidate pool ahead of making a decision. Whomever lands the gig has big cleats to fill. The Giants have employed just three managers since the start of the 1993 season: Dusty Baker, Felipe Alou, and Bochy.