The White Sox got permission to interview Yankees bench coach Carlos Mendoza in their manager search, reports Jon Heyman of the New York Post (twitter link). It’s unclear if Mendoza has already sat down with Chicago bosses or plans to do so in the next few days, but he marks a new entrant into the mix.
Mendoza, 42, has spent more than a decade in the coaching ranks. Originally from Venezuela, he began his playing career in the Giants system in 1997. He played professionally for 12 years in the San Francisco and Yankees organizations, briefly rising to the top in Triple-A. After the 2009 campaign, he went on to coach in the New York farm system. He spent the 2011-12 seasons managing at the lower levels of the organization, working his way up to the MLB coaching staff in 2018.
For the past five seasons, Mendoza has worked on manager Aaron Boone’s staff. He dabbled as an outfield instructor and was promoted to bench coach heading into the 2020 season. A year later, he was eyed by the Tigers and Red Sox in their managerial searches. Those respective spots ultimately went to AJ Hinch and Alex Cora, but Mendoza was reportedly among the last five considered for the Boston job.
The White Sox are the only team currently without a manager. Tony La Russa held the job for the past two years, but left the team at the end of the season due to health problems and subsequently announced that he would not return to the job in 2023.
So far, Chicago is known to have interviewed bench coach Miguel Cairo (who served as interim manager down the stretch while La Russa was out), Royals bench coach Pedro Grifol, Los Angeles bench coach Astros Joe Espada and former Chicago chief banker Ozzie Guillen. They’ve also been linked to Braves third base coach Ron Washington, though it’s not known if the sides officially sat down at any point.
It appears that they have begun to narrow down their list of possible candidates. Over the weekend, MLB.com’s Scott Merkin reported that Espada was no longer under consideration. Heyman adds that Washington and Guillen are unlikely to land the job at this point.