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DODGERS: DEPODESTA WIDENS MANAGERIAL SEARCH BRAVES COACH PENDLETON TO INTERVIEW.

Byline: Tony Jackson Staff Writer

Atlanta Braves hitting coach Terry Pendleton has been added to the Dodgers' managerial mix and is scheduled for a formal interview Wednesday, Dodgers general manager Paul DePodesta said Sunday.

DePodesta said there also could be up to two more candidates interviewed, which would bring the total to eight.

DePodesta also said he is considering some candidates with ties to Dodgers history, and although he wouldn't name them, various sources said they were former Detroit bench coach Kirk Gibson, Texas pitching coach Orel Hershiser and former Dodgers outfielder Bobby Valentine, now the manager of the Chiba Lotte Marines of the Japanese Pacific League.

Gibson, who like Hershiser was a Dodgers World Series hero in 1988, was fired along with Tigers manager Alan Trammell on Oct. 3. Trammell interviewed for the Dodgers job last Wednesday.

Valentine's club has a 2-1 lead over Softbank in the best-of-five Pacific League championship series and is trying to reach the finals against Central League champion Hanshin. Valentin, who previously managed the Texas Rangers and New York Mets, still has close ties with Dodgers Hall of Fame manager Tommy Lasorda, who presently is a special consultant to owner Frank McCourt.

``We continue to do research on some other candidates,'' DePodesta said. ``We believe pretty strongly in Dodger tradition. I'm not going to get into actual names, but we're definitely exploring and having some conversations with some former Dodgers in addition to the ones we already have interviewed.''

The Dodgers interviewed five candidates last week. They included Jerry Royster, manager of the Dodgers' Triple-A Las Vegas affiliate; Trammell; San Francisco bench coach Ron Wotus; Dodgers player development director Terry Collins; and Northridge resident Torey Lovullo, manager of Cleveland's Double-A Akron affiliate.

Pendleton will be the sixth candidate interviewed, and there might not be a seventh even though DePodesta said the list ultimately could go as high as eight. There are several additional candidates - including Gibson, Hershiser and Valentine - with whom DePodesta hopes to have preliminary telephone conversations, after which he will determine if he wants to bring any of them in for formal interviews.

DePodesta also said second interviews with those candidates who aren't eliminated after the first round of interviews might be conducted by telephone, which clearly would save time. DePodesta said he still is holding out some hope of having a manager in place before the World Series, which begins Saturday. Major League Baseball discourages clubs from making such major announcements during the World Series because it doesn't want its marquee event upstaged.

Tony Jackson,(818) 713-3675

tony.jackson(at)dailynews.com
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Oct 17, 2005
Words:431
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