Astros bench coach Joe Espada has two days off before Houston hosts Game 1 of the World Series on Tuesday, but it looks like some of that time will be spent in Chicago.
According to multiple reports, the Cubs will interview Espada a second time for their managerial opening. MLB Network's Jon Heyman reports that the interview is happening on Sunday.
Joe Espada is on his way to Chicago for a second managerial interview with the Cubs, per a source. Cubs were clearly impressed with what they heard last week from the Astros bench coach.— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) October 20, 2019
Joe Espada. Astros bench coach, has 2nd interview today with Cubs. Coveted candidate. Also in mix for SF and PITT. @Feinsand 1st— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) October 20, 2019
Espada is one of the more sought after managerial candidates this offseason, as he's spent the last six seasons with two of baseball's leading franchises. The 44-year-old has been Astros bench coach since 2018, and prior to that, he spent four seasons with the Yankees — 2014 as a front office assistant, 2015-17 as third-base coach.
David Ross was the presumed favorite for the Cubs' opening when the process got underway. However, by landing a second interview, Espada has clearly given the team something to think about. In fact, NBC Sports Chicago's David Kaplan reported on Thursday the Cubs came away "exceptionally impressed" from Espada's first interview on Monday.
MLB prefers teams not to make managerial announcements during the World Series. So, if the Cubs announce their decision soon, it could come in the next several weeks, if not Sunday or Monday.