Cubs set to interview Astros bench coach Joe Espada and former Phillies manager Gabe Kapler this week

Chicago Tribune Sports 1 month ago

The Cubs’ managerial search continues this week with interviews scheduled with Astros bench coach Joe Espada and former Phillies manager Gabe Kapler.

Cubs President Theo Epstein is scheduled to meet Monday with Espada, 44, who will receive a small break from his duties with the Astros in the American League Championship Series against the Yankees.

Espada, the brother-in-law of former Cubs bench coach and current Orioles manager Brandon Hyde, is completing his second season with the Astros. Espada has managed Gigantes de Carolina in the Puerto Rican League in the winter and coached Team Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic in 2013 and 2017.

Espada, like Cubs hitting coach Anthony Iapoce and former Cubs coaches and minor-league staffers John Mallee, Tim Cousins and Andy Haines, worked in the Marlins system. Espada served four seasons as a minor-league instructor (2006-09) and four as a major-league coach (2010-13) before leaving to join the Yankees as a special assistant to general manager Brian Cashman in 2014 and as a major-league coach in 2015-16.

Kapler, 44, recently was fired by the Phillies after two seasons, in which he posted a 161-163 record and had one year remaining on his contract.

Kapler served two seasons as the director of player development for the Dodgers (2015-16) and implemented many changes that included organic food and an overhaul of the staff.

Kapler lost out to Dave Roberts for the Dodgers’ managerial position prior to the 2016 season. Kapler played 12 major-league seasons, including two for the Red Sox (2003-04) under Epstein, who was the Red Sox GM at the time.

Kapler played two seasons under former Cubs manager Joe Maddon with the Rays in 2009-10. Kapler was robbed of a home run by by Dewayne Wise in the ninth inning that preserved a perfect game by White Sox left-hander Mark Buehrle in 2009.


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