Kirk Gibson, Brad Ausmus candidates for Tigers manager

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

With the news of Jim Leyland stepping down as Tigers manager breaking this morning, speculation has gone rampant on who the next manager of the Tigers will be.

Add two names to the list: Arizona Diamondbacks manger Kirk Gibson and San Diego Padres special assistant Brad Ausmus.

Gibson and Ausmus are both on the list of potential according to a report from Danny Knobler of CBS Sports.

Gibson is on the Tigers' list of possible successors to Jim Leyland, sources say. But Gibson remains under contract with the Diamondbacks, who invited him back after a disappointing 81-81 season and are unlikely to allow him to leave for Detroit.

Brad Ausmus, another onetime Tiger, is also on the team's list, and Leyland is likely to push for the job to go to either Gene Lamont or Lloyd McClendon, two former managers who have been on his Tigers coaching staff for his entire eight-year run.

Other names that the Tigers may consider include Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo, Yankees bench coach Tony Pena, Tigers bench coach Gene Lamont and Tigers hitting coach Lloyd McClendon.

Gibson, a Michigan native, helped the Tigers win their last World Series and still has strong ties with the organization. Ausmus has been one of the hottest names among managerial candidates in the past couple of years. He recently interviewed with the Nationals and was heavily considered by the Red Sox and Astros for their managerial openings last winter.

With a star-studded roster, the Tigers gig will be one of the most highly sought-after managerial jobs this offseason.

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