Confirmed in a press conference earlier Monday morning, the Houston Astros announced the promotion of bench coach, Joe Espada, to take over Dusty Baker’s role of team manager.
Following the retirement of Dusty Baker, manager of the Houston Astros manager from 2020 to 2023, the team has officially announced Joe Espada as the new manager.
Espada began his career with the Astros back in 2018, when he replaced Alex Cora as the team’s bench coach. While in this role, serving under both Dusty Baker and A.J. Hinch, Espada was reportedly in managerial consideration for multiple teams, including: Athletics, Cubs, Giants, Marlins, Mets, and White Sox.
Prior to his position as bench coach for the Astros, Espada played nine seasons in the minor leagues, served as a minor league hitting coach and infield coordinator for the Marlins organization, third base coach for the Marlins major league team for four seasons, special assistant to Yankees GM Brian Cashman, and third base coach for the Yankees for three years.
According to MLB Trade Rumors, Craig Counsell, Brad Asmus, and Omar Lopez were also in consideration for the manager position.
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The Astros finished their 2023 season as the AL West Division leaders. In the American League Championship Series, the Astros lost 11-4 to the Texas Rangers in the seventh game. The Texas Rangers would go on to win the World Series.
In other Astros news, team officials have announced plans for a new entertainment district off of Minute Maid Park. While no timeline has been confirmed, plans are to include a 300-room, 17-story hotel as well as 60,000-square-feet of retail and shopping space.