It seems that Dusty Baker’s time leading the Houston Astros is coming to an end.
The Texas Rangers rolled over the Astros 11-4 in Game 7 of the ALCS on Monday, ending Houston’s bid for a third straight trip to the World Series.
According to The Athletic’s Brittany Ghiroli and Chandler Rome, Baker has expressed to multiple people inside the organization that this season will be his last as the team’s manager. Baker has not made that official, and declined to comment when asked directly about that report by The Athletic.
Baker, 74, just wrapped up his 26th season managing in Major League Baseball. He holds a career 2,183-1,862 regular-season record and won a World Series title with the Astros in 2022. Baker went 320-226 in Houston, which is good for the second-best winning percentage in franchise history. He led the Astros to four straight ALCS runs, too, and got the team to two World Series.
Baker — who played as an MLB outfielder from 1968 to 1986 — got his managerial start in 1993 with the San Francisco Giants, where he spent 10 years. He then worked for the Chicago Cubs for four seasons, the Cincinnati Reds for six seasons and the Washington Nationals for two before joining Houston in 2020.
If Baker does in fact retire, the Astros will be the fifth team in the league looking for a new manager this offseason, joining the Giants, Cleveland Guardians, Los Angeles Angels and New York Mets. Baker will likely make his decision final in the coming days, now that the Astros have been eliminated from the postseason.
While it seems Baker is planning to step away from the day-to-day aspect of the game, he apparently isn't ready to retire from the sport completely. Instead, it sounds like he's hoping to transition into a front-office-type role.
“When he is done managing, I know he has a lot of knowledge to offer an organization,” Baker’s wife, Melissa, told The Athletic. “I know he can help to build a winner. My husband just wants to win and is a winner.”