Chicago Cubs President of Baseball Operations is nothing if not thorough. The Friday interview Epstein and GM Jed Hoyer have set up for Chicago native and Philadelphia Phillies bench Pete Mackanin will not just be a simple and traditional "tell me about your baseball philosophy" discussion. This is more about finding a great game manager that fits the new organizational style than it is about finding someone who can charm and impress in an interview setting.
The interview will be a hands-on experiment where Epstein and Hoyer truly test the decision-making skills and tenancies of the managerial candidates under the pressure of game situations. MLB.com explains some of the details of the process:
Epstein, Hoyer & Co. will present the candidates with statistics, a lineup card and a history of bullpen usage, then watch key innings of a game and stop, trying to create a situation for the manager to deal with. It could be runners on first and third with one out and a pivotal point in a game. What does he do?
As Epstein notes, the interview is designed to go beyond what a candidate says he would to in a philosophical setting, and actually test "what pieces of information he would use and what his thought process would be in trying to make a decision."
After that part of the interview is complete, candidates are thrown in front of the Chicago media for a press conference as well. Might as well find out if he can handle the press if you are getting a free look, right?
Mackanin is set for an interview and press conference on Friday.
Stay tuned to for more information, and for in-depth analysis on the Chicago Cubs be sure to visit Bleed Cubbie Blue.