According to Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated, the Seattle Mariners have settled on Eric Wedge as their next manager. Wedge was seen as the favorite for the Pittsburgh Pirates open spot, and with him off the market, the race seems wide open.
Currently the Pirates have interviewed seven candidates, including Wedge. The other candidates are:
Jeff Banister – Interim Pirates bench coach.
Ken Macha – Former Brewers manager.
Dale Sveum – Current Brewers hitting coach.
Carlos Tosca – Former Marlins and new Braves bench coach.
John Gibbons – Current Royals bench coach, former Blue Jays manager.
Bo Porter – Bench coach for Arizona in 2010.
The Pirates have also been linked to John Samuel (Orioles interim manager in 2010), Jose Oquendo (Cardinals third base coach), and have unofficially talked with Andy Van Slyke about his interest in the position.
If I had to name a favorite right now, it would probably be Banister, since he’s been with the team for a long time, and has been with all of the young players in the system since they came to the Pirates. My personal favorite remains John Farrell, as it would be the equivalent of stealing the Boston Red Sox’s pitching coach, although nothing has been mentioned about Farrell with the Pirates, or with anyone else.