White’s dismissal, meanwhile, would theoretically clear the way for Maddon to install one of his old charges — be it Mike Butcher, who won’t return in the same role for the Arizona Diamondbacks, or Jim Hickey, who served alongside Maddon in Tampa Bay and Chicago.
It’s anyone’s guess whether Eppler is bluffing — perhaps as a means of negotiating down Maddon’s asking price — but sometimes these fait accompli hirings don’t go as planned. The Los Angeles Dodgers, for instance, ended up hiring Dave Roberts after he aced the interview process — that despite now-Philadelphia Phillies skipper Gabe Kapler appearing to be a shoo-in.
There’s no telling if it means anything, but the Angels also announced they had fired bench coach Josh Paul and pitching coach Doug White. Paul had actually played under Maddon, both with the Angels and the then-Tampa Bay Devil Rays. In the past, Paul has been minor-league manager and figures to someday get an opportunity as a big-league skipper. Eppler added that he had not presented a list of candidates to his bosses, but intended to do so before Wednesday.
Yet on Tuesday, Angels general manager Billy Eppler announced the club would be doing more than simply hiring Maddon. Rather, they intend to interview a number of candidates. Here’s part of what Eppler said, according to the Los Angeles Times:
“We have a hiring process to go through, so I think it’s premature to say anything contrary to that,” Eppler said. “We’re gonna collect names this afternoon, and particularly plan on sitting down with a number of candidates. I would not handicap it any other way at this moment in time.”