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Dusty Baker close to deal to become Astros manager

Dusty Baker is working to finalize an agreement to become manager of the Houston Astros, a person with knowledge of the negotiations told the Associated Press on Tuesday.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal has not yet been completed.

The 70-year-old Baker becomes the oldest manager in the big leagues. He takes over from A.J. Hinch, who was fired Jan. 13 just an hour after he was suspended for the season by Major League Baseball for his role in Houston’s sign-stealing scandal.

Baker’s hiring is a sign the American League champions want to bring an old-school mentality and stern presence to a franchise reeling from the dismissal of Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow. Baker has 22 years of managerial experience, starting in 1993 with the San Francisco Giants.

A three-time National League Manager of the Year, Baker last managed the Washington Nationals, who let him go after a 97-65 season in 2017.

Since 2018 Baker has served as a special advisor to Giants CEO Larry Baer, working in both the baseball and business operations of the club.

“Dusty has a unique and proven ability to connect with players, be a step ahead with game strategy and provide superior leadership, as he did here for 10 years,” Baer said.

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