It appears an exhaustive first round of interviews may have been enough to determine the Reds' next general manager.
Indications are the team will name a replacement for Dan O'Brien by Thursday at the latest
, with the list of contenders shrinking to the point that a second round of formal interviews may not be necessary.
Atop the list of those still in the mix is Reds special advisor Jim Beattie, who has by far the most experience as a GM of any of the nine known candidates for the job. Beattie said Tuesday he would prefer to reserve comment, but a source said the former Expos and Orioles general manager has met with those conducting the search at least once since his formal interview Friday.
One published report said Beattie was the choice to get the job, but that could not be confirmed Tuesday night.
Minnesota Twins assistant GM Wayne Krivsky and Atlanta Braves assistant GM Frank Wren were thought to be the two strongest candidates besides Beattie. Neither returned repeated phone calls seeking comment.
Earlier Tuesday, the Reds began informing some who had interviewed that they were no longer being considered for the job. Philadelphia Phillies assistant GM Mike Arbuckle said he was told he had been eliminated, and there were indications that Reds director of major league operations Brad Kullman and special assistant to the GM Leland Maddox were out as well. Neither Kullman nor Maddox returned calls.
Reds director of international scouting and player development Johnny Almaraz said Tuesday night that he had not heard anything from the search committee, but he is scheduled to be in Cincinnati for unrelated meetings today and may find out his status then. Almaraz is not expected to make the final cut.
The other two men known to have interviewed, Chicago White Sox director of player development David Wilder and St. Louis Cardinals assistant GM John Mozeliak, did not respond to messages.
A Reds spokesman said Tuesday night that the team would not release any more information about the search process until a hire is made.