Acta, who was fired in July after 2 1/2 seasons as manager of the Nationals, and Mills were two of 10 men to interview with the Astros during a six-day span ending Monday. Houston general manager Ed Wade confirmed Acta interviewed with the front office, including owner Drayton McLane.
"Manny came to town and had an opportunity to sit with us and sit with our group, including Drayton," Wade said.
Acta arrived in Houston from Cleveland, where he interviewed Tuesday for the Indians' managerial position. When he interviewed last week with the Astros, Acta said getting the Houston job would be too good to be true.
"It's amazing, because as I mentioned, I owe them everything, including my wife," he said. "I met her while playing in the Minor Leagues for them. That being said, I understand what the process is all about. They have to do what's best for the Astros, and I'm happy to be part of it."
Mills, 52, managed 11 seasons in the Minor Leagues with the Cubs (1987-92), Rockies (1993-96) and Dodgers (2002), moving into managing immediately upon the completion of his playing career. He's coached 11 years at the Major League level, including the past six as Boston's bench coach.
Acta and Mills joined eight others who have interviewed: interim manager Dave Clark, Astros Minor League field coordinator Al Pedrique, former Milwaukee manager Ned Yost, San Diego hitting coach Randy Ready, former Seattle and Arizona manager Bob Melvin, Philadelphia bench coach Pete Mackanin, former Astros manager Phil Garner and Red Sox coach Tim Bogar.
Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.