Former Tigers catcher Brad Ausmus and current Tigers hitting coach Lloyd McClendon are among the betting favorites to succeed Jim Leyland as manager of the Detroit Tigers, according to Bovada.lv.
Ausmus spend three summers in Detroit -- 1996, 1999, 2000 -- during an 18 year playing career that took him from Southern California to Houston to Detroit.
The 44-year-old Ausmus has no managerial experience in either the major or minor leagues, though he did lead Team Israel in the World Baseball Classic this year. Experience will not necessarily be a factor, Tigers president and general manager Dave Dombrowski said Monday during the press conference to announce the end of Leyland's reign as manager, though it would certainly help.
"I think the ability to handle the club, this is such a large job now and days, having managed is important, not necessarily at the major league level, not necessarily in the postseason," Dombrowski said. "I will also say there have been some people who haven't manged who have done a solid job at the major league level. ... Expectations will be to compete and win a championship again next year. We'll put all that into the hopper, have some questions and start to interview people pretty soon."
Ausmus currently serves as an assistant in the front office of the San Diego Padres. He was also thought to be in consideration for the Nationals managerial position.
With Ausmus as the top candidate from outside the organization, McClendon and Tom Brookens are thought to be the top two candidates from within. McClendon was a member of Leyland's staff during the duo's Pittsburgh years and eventually was named manager of the Pirates in 2000. He held the job until 2005, being fired midway through a 55-81 year. His managerial record is 336-446.
The other internal candidate often spoken of is Tom Brookens (5/1 odds per Bovada). Brookens managed his way through the Tigers' minor league organization before being promoted to a coaching position with the big league club. Brookens was spoken of as being Leyland's natural successor, and at the time of the promotion some thought he was brought to Detroit to learn directly form his mentor. Brookens spent most of his career with the Tigers organization as a third baseman and utilityman.
One former Tiger whose name you won't hear: Kirk Gibson. Though some thought he'd be a good choice, the Diamondbacks moved quick to put an end to that thought, saying Gibson is "not going anywhere."
Who will be the next manager of the Tigers?
Brad Ausmus 4/1
Lloyd McClendon 9/2
Tom Brookens 5/1
Torey Lovullo 5/1
Gene Lamont 11/2
Manny Acta 8/1
Larry Parrish 8/1
Tony Pena 15/1
Dusty Baker 15/1