Pat Murphy won’t be joining Craig Counsell in Chicago after all.
The Milwaukee Brewers’ longtime bench coach will instead replace his former protege as the team’s manager according to a report by The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal.
As of late Monday night, there had been no official announcement from the team.
Murphy, 64, has served as Counsell’s right-hand-man since 2016 and quickly emerged as a leading candidate for the job after Counsell stunned the Brewers by leaving for the Cubs last week.
General manager Matt Arnold told reporters last week that Murphy was in serious contention for the position and according to reports, had conversations with Murphy about taking over even before Counsell’s free agency came to its unexpected conclusion.
His hiring provides a bit of stability and continuity as the Brewers enter into something of an uncertain time. After making the playoffs for the fifth time in six seasons, the team could look significantly different in 2024 should Arnold choose to deal veterans Corbin Burns and Willy Adames with an eye toward re-loading.
With Murphy at the helm, the Brewers will bring back their entire coaching roster from last season though Murphy will need to hire his own bench coach.
After a standout career at Florida Atlantic University, Murphy spent four seasons in the Giants’ and Padres’ farm system before entering the coaching ranks. In 1987, he was named head coach at Notre Dame, where he first met Counsell, and guided the Irish to a 318-116-1 record over the next seven seasons including trips to the NCAA Regional Finals in each of his last three seasons in South Bend.
Arizona State pried Murphy away from Notre Dame in 1995 and over the next decade claimed four Pac-10 Conference titles under his leadership while spending 100 consecutive weeks ranked among the Top 25 and finishing the season ranked among the top three three times.
Murphy was named the conference’s coach of the year four times and led the Sun Devils to four College World Series appearances but he was forced to resign in 2009 after NCAA investigators uncovered a number of violations — though Murphy, himself, was not implicated personally.
The Padres hired him as a Special Assistant to Baseball Operations the following February and after spending two years managing San Diego’s Northwest League affiliate in Eugene, Ore., Murphy was named manager at Triple-A El Paso.
Murphy was still leading the Chihuahuas in 2015 when Counsell, who became Milwaukee’s manager when Ron Roenicke was fired one month into the season, wanted to hire his former coach to serve as his bench coach.
The Padres refused to give Milwaukee permission to talk to Murphy and instead, named him their big-league manager after Bud Black was fired later in the season.
After leading San Diego to a 42-54 record the rest of the way, Murphy was not retained as manager and ultimately joined Counsell in Milwaukee for the 2016 season.
This story will be updated.