CINCINNATI — Pitching coach Bryan Price was first on the Reds' list of manager candidates. Three hours of answering every question tossed his way ended their search.
The Reds stayed in-house for their next manager, giving Price a three-year deal Tuesday that came with expectations that he'll take them deep into the playoffs right away.
"Bryan is exceptional," owner Bob Castellini said. "We've been fortunate to be with him long enough to know how exceptional he is."
Dusty Baker led the Reds to three 90-win seasons and three playoff appearances in the past four years. But Cincinnati got knocked out in the first round of the postseason each time, and the Reds fired Baker with a year left on his two-year deal.
The job carries enormous expectations for Price, 51, a widely respected coach who has never managed at any level. He interviewed for the Marlins' job last year, which got him thinking that he'd like to be a manager some day.
Given his four successful seasons in Cincinnati, he wanted to stay if possible.
"It's a team that's capable of doing even more," Price said. "I think we certainly should talk very optimistically about the three playoff appearances in the last four years, which were maybe somewhat discredited because we hadn't gotten past the first round.
"Considering the 15 years prior, it was definitely a huge step in the right direction. But we all have expectations of getting beyond that."
LINCECUM RE-SIGNS: Right-hander Tim Lincecum is staying put with the Giants just as he hoped, reaching agreement on a $35 million, two-year contract through the 2015 season. The deal is pending a physical, which had yet to be scheduled. Lincecum, 29, has a full no-trade clause in the new deal.
BRAVES: Longtime scout and front-office executive Dick Balderson retired after 16 seasons in the organization.
DODGERS: The team did not pick up the 2014 contract of bench coach Trey Hillman, who joined manager Don Mattingly's staff in 2011. Hillman is a close friend to Mattingly, who indicated Monday he was unhappy with the team's lack of commitment to him.
METS: Right-hander Matt Harvey had reconstructive elbow surgery and will miss the 2014 season.
TWINS: Hall of Former Paul Molitor joined the coaching staff and will oversee baserunning, bunting, infield instruction and positioning plus assist with in-game strategy.