Sources: Baker out 3 days after Reds’ ouster

Dusty Baker is out as manager of the Cincinnati Reds, three days after the team lost the NL wild-card game to the Pittsburgh Pirates, sources told ESPN.

The Reds will announce Friday that Baker, 64, will be replaced. It wasn’t immediately clear if he was fired or stepped down. Baker had one season left on a two-year contract he signed last October. He will be paid his 2014 salary, the sources said.

Baker guided the Reds to the playoffs three of the past four years, but they never advanced.

Cincinnati went 90-72 this season and finished third in the NL Central behind the St. Louis Cardinals and Pirates. The Reds lost their final five games of the regular season, costing themselves a chance to host the wild-card playoff, which they lost 6-2 at Pittsburgh on Tuesday night.

Baker has managed 20 years in the majors with the San Francisco Giants, Chicago Cubs and Cincinnati. His teams have won five division titles and he is a three-time NL Manager of the Year.

The Reds won the NL Central in 2012, but Baker missed the celebration because he was hospitalized with an irregular heartbeat and a mini-stroke. He was admitted to a Chicago hospital during a road trip and missed 11 games.

Cincinnati then took a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five division series before losing three straight home games to San Francisco, the eventual World Series champion.

Baker took over the Reds in 2008 and revitalized them. He led Cincinnati to the NL Central crown in 2010, but the team was swept by the Philadelphia Phillies. At the time, Baker became one of just six managers to win division titles with three teams, joining Billy Martin, Joe Torre, Tony La Russa, Lou Piniella and Davey Johnson.

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