Black also scheduled to talk with team

Originally Published: November 3, 2003 news services

BOSTON -- The Boston Red Sox received permission Friday to talk to Anaheim Angels pitching coach Bud Black and Los Angeles Dodgers third base coach Glenn Hoffman about succeeding Grady Little as manager.

Both have been widely reported among the top candidates for the position. The job opened Oct. 27 when the Red Sox declined to pick up their option on the final year of Little's contract.

"As of right now, they are the only two we have asked and received permission" to interview," team spokesman Kevin Shea said Friday.

Hoffman is scheduled to be interviewed Monday. Black is expected to interview later in the week.

Hoffman, 45, who played shortstop for the Red Sox, was interim manager of the Dodgers for 88 games in 1998, and returns to the city where he played eight seasons as an infielder. He became bullpen coach of the Dodgers in 1999, and spent the last four seasons as their third-base coach.

He's worked with Red Sox pitching coach Dave Wallace in the Dodgers' organization, and Wallace is said to be a Hoffman booster. Last March, Hoffman turned down a request to be interviewed for the managerial opening that was filled by Little.

Black, 46, has never managed in the majors or minors but was part of the Anaheim club that won the 2002 World Series. He spent 15 seasons as a major league pitcher and is considered a talented judge and handler of pitchers.

He became Anaheim's pitching coach in 2000, and last week received a one-year extension on his contract with the Angels.

Little, who interviewed with the Baltimore Orioles on Friday, led the Red Sox to records of 93-69 and 95-67 as they reached the playoffs for the first time since 1999. But their streak reached 85 seasons without winning a World Series.

He was praised by general manager Theo Epstein for fostering a spirit of togetherness in the clubhouse.

But Little was second-guessed by fans and the media for leaving ace Pedro Martinez in during the eighth inning of the seventh game of the AL championship series. The New York Yankees overcame a 5-2 deficit and won 6-5.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.