The Royals have interviewed internal candidates for the managerial opening, including bench coach Pedro Grifol, third base coach Vance Wilson, and Omaha manager Scott Thorman, according to MLB.com reporter Anne Rogers. She also confirms the Royals interviewed Rays bench coach Matt Quatraro, as Ken Rosenthal reported last week.
Grifol is a long time coach who has worked with the Mets, Twins, and Mariners before joining the Royals in 2012. He joined the big league staff in 2013, taking over hitting coach duties from George Brett. He has also served as catching coach, and more recently was bench coach for Mike Matheny. The bilingual Grifol is said to be well-liked by players and has been useful in integrating analytics into the on-field game plan. He has previously interviewed for managerial openings with the Tigers and Giants, and has interviewed this off-season for jobs with White Sox and Marlins, reportedly impressing the brass in Chicago.
Vance Wilson was a big league catcher for eight years before going into coaching in 2010 with the Royals. He managed in the minors for eight seasons before joining the big league team as bullpen coach in 2018. In 2020, he moved to third base coach, where he has been criticized for his overly aggressive sends. The Royals had the third most outs at home in baseball in 2022. Despite that, Wilson has a good reputation as a good minor league manager and has familiarity working with Royals players.
Scott Thorman is a former Braves first baseman who joined the Royals in 2014 as a minor league coach. He began managing the next year and has steadily risen up the ranks, winning three minor league championships. He took over Omaha in 2022, and has experience managing several of the players now on the Royals roster. He also joined the big league staff for the Toronto series when some coaches were unable to travel due to vaccination requirements.
In addition to Quatraro, the Royals have also reportedly interviewed Phillies third base coach Dusty Wathan, son of the former Royals catcher and manager. They have also reportedly been interested in Dodgers first base coach Clayton McCullough, although there have been no reports of an interview.