But Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper, who was briefed on the recommendations, has asked for more time to consider whether to sign off on the reinstatement of the captain of the nuclear-powered carrier.

Mr. Esper received the recommendation on Friday that Captain Crozier be reinstated from the chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Michael M. Gilday, and the acting Navy secretary, James McPherson. Defense Department officials said earlier that they expected to announce the results of the Navy’s investigation into the matter on Friday afternoon.

Mr. Esper’s decision to hold up the investigation has surprised Navy officials, who believed that the defense secretary would leave the process in the hands of the military chain of command.