Nationals third base coach Bo Porter has long been considered a potential big-league manager, so it's not surprising that multiple reports out of Houston say he's interviewing today for the Astros' job.
According to MLB.com and the Houston Chronicle, Porter flew to Houston today (an off-day for the Nationals) and is meeting with new Astros owner Jim Crane and general manager Jeff Luhnow.
Porter, 40, lives in Houston in the offseason, though he has no previous connection to the Astros organization. This isn't the first time he's interviewed for a major-league managing position, though: He was a finalist for the Pirates' job in 2010 and the Marlins' job in 2011 before ultimately losing out to Clint Hurdle and Ozzie Guillen, respectively.
Porter also was considered by the Nationals last fall, though Davey Johnson was widely expected all along to retain the managerial job after taking over in midseason.
Johnson has one year remaining on his three-year, consulting contract with the Nationals. He has said he won't discuss his situation until after the season, but he is expected to return for 2013 at age 70.
The Nationals, ideally, would like to eventually replace Johnson from within the organization, with Porter and bench coach Randy Knorr the most likely candidates to someday ascend to the managerial position.
In order to interview Porter while he's still under contract with the Nationals, the Astros would have had to receive permission from GM Mike Rizzo.
The Washington Nationals announced Friday Dusty Baker will not return as manager of the club in 2018.
Baker led the team to the first back-to-back division titles in franchise history, and the Nationals were 192-132 under Baker, but they failed to make it to an NLCS.
Baker is 14th in MLB history with 1,863 career wins.
The next Nationals' manager will be their seventh since they arrived in DC.
Only the Marlins have had as many.
"I'm surprised and disappointed," Baker told USA TODAY Sports. "They told me they would get back to me and I told them I was leaving town yesterday and they waited 10 days to tell me."
"I really thought this was my best year. We won at least 95 games each year and won the division back to back years but they said they wanted to go a different direction. It's hard to understand."
The team also announced the contracts for the Major League coaching staff have also expired, and the search for a new manager will begin immediately.
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While Nats fans were still digesting the news that Dusty Baker will not return as manager next year, the team released some more surprising news.
Second baseman Daniel Murphy underwent knee surgery today, per an official team report.
Washington Post reporter Chelsea Janes reported that the surgery is considered significant and the team won't put a timeline on the recovery process:
"The procedure, according to the statement released by the team, repaired articular cartilage in Murphy’s right knee. For those interested in the details, it was a debridement and microfracture surgery, and orthopedic surgeon Timothy Kremchek performed it."
"For those concerned with the implications of the procedure, those are still unclear. The statement clarified that Murphy’s rehab “will progress throughout the offseason,” as one would hope, and did not include a timetable.
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