By Mark Gonzales, Tribune reporter
7:31 AM EST, November 7, 2013
Rick Renteria, who served the last two seasons as bench coach for the San Diego Padres, will be named later today to succeed the fired Dale Sveum as Chicago Cubs manager, the Tribune confirmed.
Renteria, 51, agreed to a three-year contract. He will be introduced to the media Thursday via teleconference because he still is recovering from hip surgery.
Renteria has spent the past six seasons as a coach with the Padres and fits numerous qualifications that Cubs team President Theo Epstein sought after firing Sveum on Sept. 30.
Renteria has extensive experience working with young players, having served eight seasons as a manager in the Marlins’ and Padres’ farm system.
Renteria also is bilingual, which will help in communicating more directly with several Cubs players and prospects, namely Starlin Castro, Junior Lake and Javier Baez.
The hiring of Renteria completes a search that lasted more than five weeks, starting with the pursuit of Joe Girardi. But the Cubs never had a chance to speak directly with Girardi, who re-signed with the New York Yankees for four years.
The Cubs also interviewed former major league managers A.J. Hinch, Eric Wedge and Manny Acta, as well as Dave Martinez and Brad Ausmus (hired by the Tigers).
But they didn't receive permission to talk to Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo because of an agreement after the 2011 season that stated that Cubs President Theo Epstein couldn't hire any employees from the Red Sox for a three-year window after Epstein departed Boston.
Renteria, who did multiple interviews despite recuperating from the surgery, also received strong interest from the Tigers before they hired Ausmus.
Renteria managed for four seasons in the Miami Marlins’ organization under David Dombrowski, who was their GM at the time and now serves as Tigers’ president. Renteria also interviewed with the Seattle Mariners.
Renteria, a first-round pick of the Pirates in the 1980 draft, played parts of five seasons in the majors with the Pirates (1986), Mariners (1987-88) and Marlins (1993-94), for whom he earned the nickname the “Secret Weapon’’ after batting .351 in 74 at-bats with runners in scoring position.
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