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Who's next? Taking a look at possible candidates for next Cardinals manager

Will it be an internal candidate or an outside hire for next manager of the Cardinals? Here are some of the most talked about possibilities

ST. LOUIS — The Cardinals are on the hunt for their fourth manager in the past 12 years after the abrupt canning of Mike Shildt.

John Mozeliak and the front office cited "philosophical differences" for the split, and began looking toward the future.

So what does that future look like?

In his press conference after firing Shildt, Mozeliak said there were a number of "quality internal candidates" already in the organization who may be considered for next manager.

There are also some intriguing names elsewhere that might get an interview.

So let's take a look at some of the big names that could end up with one of the most scrutinized jobs in St. Louis.

Oliver Marmol

The man getting the most play as a successor to Shildt seems to be current Cardinals bench coach Oliver Marmol.

Marmol is just 35 years old and was drafted by the Cardinals in the sixth round of the 2007 MLB Draft.

He turned to coaching early in his career and was already managing the Cardinals' rookie ball affiliate in Johnson City in his age 25-26 season.

From there, he advanced through the Cardinals' coaching system to State College and eventually Palm Beach.

Marmol moved to the Major Leagues in 2017, serving as the first-base coach on Mike Matheny's staff. He moved over to bench coach once Mike Shildt got the gig full time.

When it comes to internal candidates, there's not a better bet than Marmol, who also received some extra praise from the departing Shildt in his final statement to members of the media.

Credit: AP
St. Louis Cardinals' bench coach Oliver Marmol talks to starting pitcher Johan Oviedo after he left the game in the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds in Cincinnati, Sunday, July 25, 2021. (AP Photo/Bryan Woolston)

Stubby Clapp

The other name getting a lot of play as a possible internal candidate is first base coach Stubby Clapp.

Richard Keith Clapp, 48, has a long history with the Cardinals.

(Fun fact according to Baseball Reference: "Stubby" is a family nickname and he's the third generation to be called "Stubby".)

The team drafted Clapp in the 36th round of the 1996 MLB Draft out of Texas Tech.

The Windsor, Canada, native toiled in the minor leagues of the Cardinals system before finally cracking the Majors in 2001. In 23 games in the big leagues, Clapp went 5 for 25 with two doubles and one RBI.

He's a member of the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and is somewhat of a legend for the Canadian National Team.

After his playing days, Clapp turned to coaching. 

He managed the Tri-City ValleyCats of the New York Penn League in 2011 and 2012, and eventually worked his way up to manage the Cardinals' Triple-A affiliate in Memphis in 2017. There, he led the Redbirds to back-to-back Pacific Coast League championships and the Triple-A championship in 2018.

Clapp has interviewed for a managerial spot with the Toronto Blue Jays, so this wouldn't be the first time he's being considered for a top spot.

Credit: AP
St. Louis Cardinals' Nolan Arenado (28) is congratulated by first base coach Stubby Clapp after hitting a three-run home run during the third inning of a baseball game against the New York Mets Monday, May 3, 2021, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Skip Schumaker

A name that Cardinals fans will be sure to recognize, Schumaker has Cardinals roots but isn't currently with the club.

The Cardinals drafted Jared Michael Schumaker in the fifth round of the 2001 MLB Draft out of the University of California.

Schumaker made his living in the majors with his versatility, spending eight years in St. Louis, two years in Cincinnati and a year with the Los Angeles Dodgers. In the 2011 season with the Cardinals, he played left field, center field, right field, second base and pitched one inning.

Schumaker was a career .278 hitter with a .337 OBP who won a World Series with that 2011 club. He also played in 28 games for the 2006 World Series champion Cardinals.

In 2018, the California native was named the first-base coach for the San Diego Padres and served in that position until the end of the 2019 campaign.

Under then-manager Jayce Tingler, Schumaker was given the title of "associate manager", which was different from a bench coach with an elevated importance.

Schumaker was a fan favorite in St. Louis and has drawn rave reviews for his influence in San Diego. The Padres need a new manager as well, but could the Cardinals come calling for a reunion?

Credit: AP
San Diego Padres associate manager Skip Schumaker, right, argues with home plate umpire Doug Eddings, left, during the of a baseball game against the Miami Marlins, Saturday, July 24, 2021, in Miami. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

Jose Oquendo

While it's likely "The Secret Weapon" is happy with his current job helping develop Cardinals minor leaguers and not interested in being a manager in the Majors anymore, you have to include him on this list.

One of the smartest baseball minds to grace the Cardinals organization, Oquendo has earned glowing reviews as a coach after playing 10 years for the Cardinals all over the diamond. In 1988 he literally played every position on the field.

He was the Cardinals' third base coach from 1999 through 2018, with a brief hiatus due to knee surgery. He's been with the organization as an instructor ever since.

If Oquendo, 58, still wants a shot at the big job, the Cardinals could finally give him a call.

Credit: AP
St. Louis Cardinals third base coach Jose Oquendo hits grounders during spring training baseball practice Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018, in Jupiter, Fla. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Mark McGwire

One of the greatest power hitters in baseball history certainly has the big-name quality, but it remains unknown if he's ready to get back into the game. It also may be a point of interest to see if he'd gel with hitting coach Jeff Albert and the team's current philosophy when it comes to the analytical side of the game.

You know about the 583 career home runs, the historic 1998 season and of course the steroid revelations that followed.

McGwire returned to the Majors in 2010 as hitting coach for Tony LaRussa in St. Louis, where he stayed for three seasons. The Cardinals offense was potent under McGwire and he won a World Series ring with the 2011 club.

After St. Louis, McGwire served in the same capacity for the Dodgers and then as bench coach for the Padres until the end of the 2018 season.

McGwire would be an intriguing candidate if he wants to get back into the swing of things.

Credit: AP
FILE - In this Oct. 10, 2012, file photo, St. Louis Cardinals hitting coach Mark McGwire watches batting practice before Game 3 of the National League division baseball series against the Washington Nationals in Washington. McGwire was hired Wednesday, Nov. 7, as hitting coach for the Los Angeles Dodgers, where he will work with All-Star sluggers Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

Carlos Beltran

The former Cardinal was hired as the manager of the New York Mets, but resigned in early 2020 after being named as one of the "ringleaders" in the Astros sign-stealing scandal.

Has enough time passed?

The Astros players involved have moved on. Then Astros manager A.J. Hinch already has a new job in Detroit.

Is it time for Beltran to get another chance? And could it come in St. Louis?

Credit: AP
FILE - In this Oct. 3, 2013 file photo, St. Louis Cardinals' Carlos Beltran follows through on a three-run home run against the Pittsburgh Pirates in the third inning of Game 1 of baseball's National League division series, in St. Louis. Beltran and the New York Yankees have finalized a $45 million, three-year contract. The agreement, reached Dec. 6, was announced by the team Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File)

Ron Washington

There are a lot of the usual baseball names being thrown about once you look outside obvious candidates with at least some kind of ties to the Cardinals.

Buck Showalter, Jeff Banister, Brad Ausmus and perhaps even Bruce Bochy have been mentioned as names in the potential manager pool.

Ron Washington's is the most fun, though.

The wind-milling third base coach for the Atlanta Braves is a baseball lifer and seems due for another shot at the big job. He hasn't managed since his last year with the Rangers in 2014.

At the very least it'd be amusing to see him managing the team that ended his World Series aspirations in 2011.

Credit: AP
FILE - In this July 31, 2019, file photo, Atlanta Braves third base coach Ron Washington walks in the dugout during a baseball game against the Washington Nationals in Washington. Coach Washington is the winningest manager for the Rangers, and led them to their only two World Series appearances in 2010 and 2011. Washington, Atlanta's third base coach since 2017, would have been back in Texas for a three-game interleague series, though in different ballpark than the one where he managed. Washington was near the end of his eighth season with Texas in 2014 when he stepped down for personal reasons. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

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