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The Red Sox are beginning their manager search on Friday, but next week's interviewees have already begun to leak.
Brad Ausmus played in the majors for 18 years, from 1993 through 2010. While Ausmus often had his bat ridiculed, his defensive abilities behind the plate -- and his baseball IQ -- were rarely the target of mockery. It was clear to those within the game why Ausmus continued to be employed, often as a starting catcher, for as long as he was. A player like that often finds themselves in coaching, or these days, in a front office position, following their career. Ausmus has done a little of both, and now, he's reportedly interviewing for the vacant Red Sox manager spot:
Brad Ausmus interviewing with Red Sox for manager job early next week according to major league source.— Nick Cafardo (@nickcafardo) October 11, 2012
Ausmus is currently an Assistant to the General Manager in San Diego, a position he was hired into by former Red Sox assistant GM, Jed Hoyer. He's working with another former assistant GM of the Sox, Josh Byrnes. It's not a surprise that Ben Cherington, who worked with both men, might have some similar taste in that regard. Albeit for a different position.
That's not Ausmus' only gig at the moment, as he's giving managing a shot right now in the World Baseball Classic. Ausmus is the manager for Israel's team, who won two of their three games in the September qualifier, but fell to Spain in the finals.
A former catcher, known for his leadership behind the plate, and now with front office experience? Ausmus comes off as a combination of Jason Varitek (who now holds the same assistant to the GM position with the Sox as Ausmus does the Padres) and John Farrell in those regards, and it's no wonder the Red Sox would be intrigued by him.