Memphis' Maloney among Cards' targets

Memphis' Maloney among Cards' targets

ST. LOUIS -- The Cardinals began the interview process for their vacant managerial job on Thursday, bringing in the first two candidates in a process that will last into next week at least.

Triple-A Memphis manager Chris Maloney and Chicago White Sox third-base coach Joe McEwing met with the club on Thursday, a team source said. The Cardinals will interview at least one more candidate on Friday. It's possible that they won't interview anyone on Monday but would have one or two more candidates in on Tuesday.

Maloney, 50, has spent 20 seasons as a Minor League manager, 17 of them in the Cardinals organization. He's been the manager at Memphis since 2007, going 387-350 in that time. Maloney began managing in the Cardinals organization in 1991 and has managed at every level of the Minor Leagues, from the Rookie League to Triple-A. Maloney spent four seasons as a professional player, batting .266 with a .372 on-base percentage during stints in the Mets and Cardinals organizations.

McEwing, 39, is probably best known as a do-it-all utility player who spent parts of nine seasons in the Major Leagues, including his first two in St. Louis, where he remains a fan favorite. He was recently named to the White Sox's Major League coaching staff as a third-base coach after spending three years managing in Chicago's Minor League system. McEwing managed the Triple-A Charlotte Knights in 2011, following two years managing Chicago's Class A Advanced Winston-Salem affiliate. McEwing hit .251 with a .302 on-base percentage as a Major Leaguer, appearing at every position besides pitcher and catcher at some point in his career.

The Cardinals also expect to interview former Cubs player and current Phillies Minor League manager Ryne Sandberg, among other candidates. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported on Thursday that other candidates will include Cardinals third-base coach Jose Oquendo, former St. Louis catcher Mike Matheny and former Red Sox manager Terry Francona.

Matthew Leach is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Obviously, You're Not a Golfer and follow him on Twitter at @MatthewHLeach. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.