Astros reportedly plan to bring back Dusty Baker for at least 2022

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By , Audacy

Dusty Baker may still get another crack at winning a World Series.

The Houston Astros plan to bring back the 72-year-old manager and negotiate and one- or two-year deal within the next few days, according to USA Today Sports’ Bob Nightengale.

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Baker, whom the Astros hired two years ago following the sign-stealing scandal that cost A.J. Hinch his job, was not under contract beyond 2021 and many speculated whether or not this would be his last season as a manager.

In two seasons as Astros manager, Baker has led the team to a 124-98 record and made the playoffs each season, losing in the ALCS in 2020 before winning the AL pennant only to fall to the Atlanta Braves in six games in the World Series this year.

He became the first manager to ever lead five different franchises to the postseason.

Following Tuesday’s Game 6 loss, Baker hinted at a possible return.

“I’ve still got some unfinished business,” he told reporters. “I mean, I love these guys over here. I love the town of Houston. The fans are behind us. … What can you do? Except go home, take a shower, figure out how you’re going to come back and win it next year. Look, last year we got one game short of the World Series, and this year we were two games short of the championship. So I guess that’s progress.”

The Astros could potentially lose star shortstop Carlos Correa in free agency, which would be a huge blow to the championship core from 2017.

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But Baker has been lauded for his ability to guide the ship after the drama of the sign-stealing scandal that made the Astros public enemy No. 1 across the league.

The Astros also returned the World Series this year despite losing George Springer to free agency and not having ace Justin Verlander due to injury.

Baker has 1,987 career wins as a manager — making him the winningest manager in MLB history without a World Series title. He fell two games short this year and came close in 2002 with the San Francisco Giants, who lost to the Angels in seven games.

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