The Mets interviewed another pair of managerial candidates on Wednesday in Buck Showalter and Bob Geren as their first round of conversations are set to come to a close.
Showalter — who reportedly has the backing of prominent Mets figures including Max Scherzer — interviewed “really well,” according to the New York Post’s Mike Puma.
“They were pretty impressed with Buck today,” Puma’s source added.
The 65-year-old skipper is the most experienced candidate of the bunch, having managed the Yankees, Arizona Diamondbacks, Texas Rangers, and Baltimore Orioles over 20 years and 3,000-plus games.
While there have been questions about his ability to fit into a so-called modern-day clubhouse given his old-school reputation, Showalter has still been in the running for managerial positions since the Orioles parted ways with him in 2018. He interviewed with the Philadelphia Phillies and Los Angeles Angels in each of the previous two seasons.
As for Geren, the 60-year-old Los Angeles Dodgers bench coach held the same position with the Mets under Terry Collins from 2012-15. He also managed parts of five seasons with the Oakland Athletics.
The Mets have interviewed five known candidates over the last week: Showalter, Geren, Houston Astros bench coach Joe Espada, Tampa Bay Rays bench coach Matt Quatraro, and former Angels and Detroit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus.
Per reports, a sixth mystery candidate that interviewed with the Mets on Thursday was revealed as Los Angeles Dodgers first-base coach Clayton McCullough, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post. After managing for seven years in the minors, McCullough was hired by the Dodgers as a minor-league fielding coordinator. He became the team’s first-base coach for the 2021 season.
Expect the process to pick up shortly as Mets owner Steve Cohen will enter the interview process after general manager Billy Eppler’s initial list is cut down to two or three candidates. Following another round of conversations, a third could be made by later next week.