Add more managerial candidates to the list.
In addition to the Red Sox' previously reported interviews with Cubs third base coach Will Venable and Pirates bench coach Don Kelly, major league sources said that the Red Sox have interviewed at least four additional candidates for their managerial vacancy.
Diamondbacks bench coach Luis Urueta, Twins bench coach Mike Bell, Padres associate manager Skip Schumaker, and Marlins bench coach James Rowson have all interviewed with the Red Sox in recent days. Like Venable and Kelly, none has prior big league managing experience.
Urueta interviewed with the Sox for the second time, as the team also discussed its managerial opening with him in January, after Alex Cora unexpectedly departed, and before the team entrusted the job for 2020 to Ron Roenicke.
Urueta, a 39-year-old from Colombia, played five minor league seasons in the Arizona and St. Louis farm systems, then played abroad for four years in Italy. He worked as a coach and coordinator in the Diamondbacks system from 2008-17, then joined their big league staff for the 2018 season. He was promoted to bench coach for the 2020 season.
In January, Diamondbacks manager and former Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo praised Urueta’s communication skills, game preparation, and analysis.
“His communication skills and his ability to relate to players is really, really off the charts,” Lovullo said. "He is bilingual and has the ability to communicate with just about any player on the field. He’s very comfortable stepping into normal conversations and very difficult conversations. I think those are some of the qualities that some of the best managers that I’ve been around possess.
“He understands a lot of analytical aspects of the game, yes, but he also takes it upon himself to look at what he can get on his own, to get as much information to pass along to the player or in this case myself.”
Schumaker, 40, spent parts of 11 seasons in the big leagues. After his playing career, he spent two years working with San Diego’s front office and player development staff before joining the big league coaching staff in 2018. He spent two years as first base coach before being elevated to associate manager for first-year manager Jayce Tingler for 2020.
Schumaker is viewed as a strong communicator with both players and the front office — capable of commanding both the affection and respect of players in a way that allows him to challenge them, while also able to work well with a front office on implementing new ideas.
Bell, 45, is part of a multi-generational big league family, the grandson of Gus Bell, son of Buddy Bell, and brother of Reds manager David Bell. He had a cup of coffee in the big leagues in a 13-year pro career, then spent 13 years as a manager and director of player development with the Diamondbacks.
Rowson, 44, spent last year as the Marlins offensive coordinator and bench coach. At a time when hitting coaches rarely end up on managerial tracks, Rowson has bucked the trend after a four-year career in the minors and independent ball in the late 1990s. He spent several years as a minor league hitting coach in the Yankees and Cubs systems, taking over as a big league hitting coach in 2012-13 in Chicago, where he helped a number of young players (such as Anthony Rizzo) who were finding their footing in the big leagues.
Rowson returned to the Yankees as a hitting coordinator, then joined the Twins as a hitting coach from 2017-19 — helping Minnesota to a record 307 homers in the 2019 campaign. Miami then hired Rowson for his dual role as offensive coordinator and bench coach last year, when the Marlins reached the playoffs for the first time since 2003.
While the Red Sox have interviewed several candidates without big league managerial experience, they are also nearing a point where they could talk to another potential candidate who does have experience: Cora, their manager in 2018-19 before he and the team parted ways in January because of his role (as Houston’s bench coach) in the Astros' sign-stealing practices in 2017. Cora’s season-long suspension expires at the conclusion of the World Series, at which point he can talk to teams about a potential return to the dugout.
Peter Abraham of the Globe staff contributed to this report.