In the wake of MLB suspending A.J. Hinch for one year and the Astros promptly dismissing him, the club is expected to name Joe Espada as the interim manager for the 2020 season, MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reports.
Espada, 44, coached in the minor leagues from 2007-09 before joining the Marlins in 2010. He served as their third base coach through 2013. He then became the infield coach and third base coach for the Yankees from 2015-17 before landing with the Astros in 2018 as a bench coach, the position he had held for the past two seasons.
Espada had recently been a finalist for the Cubs’ and Giants’ then-open managerial openings, but those clubs ultimately went with David Ross and Gabe Kapler, respectively. Espada had also been in the running ahead of the 2018 season for the Rangers’ and Blue Jays’ managerial positions. He has certainly been ready for a managing gig, though it must be disappointing to him to finally get it under these circumstances. Presumably, Espada will have the opportunity to have the interim tag removed if he has a good showing with the Astros in 2020.