Archive for the ‘Coaching Staff’ Category

mottola

Chad Mottola

Well here’s an odd bit of news given everything we’ve ever heard about the Jays’ supposed wizard of a hitting coach: per a team release, neither Dwayne Murphy nor Chad Mottola will be returning to the Major League coaching staff of the Blue Jays in 2014.

Murphy, who moved to first base this year after being the club’s hitting coach since 2010 (having been promoted from the role of roving hitting instructor) is retiring as a coach.

Mottola, the hitting coach, who had worked his way up through the organization, and long been praised for his work with the club’s minor leaguers– having appeared to have been specifically groomed for the role, even joining the big league staff in September of 2012– according to the release, “will not return to the Major League staff in 2014.”

That’s all that’s specified by the release, pertaining to those two, so it’s somewhat unclear if Mottola is being reassigned– perhaps they felt he works better with up-and-comers?– or if this is a straight-up firing. My inkling is that they would have announced a reassignment, or at least made mention of it, were that the case, but that’s all the information we have at the moment.

John Gibbons’ other staffers– bench coach DeMarlo Hale, pitching coach Pete Walker, third base coach Luis Rivera, and bullpen coach Pat Hentgen– will remain in their roles next season.

No replacements for the departing coaches have been named.

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Not Stubby Clapp

The Jays sent out a press release this afternoon announcing their full slate of minor league coaches and development staff for 2013, including some new hires and ones we’d already heard about– even though some of us *COUGH* may have not bothered to post anything about them (sorry, maple boners)– being made official.

It’s… interesting? Mildly?

I don’t know. But here’s what’s worth noting:

Most interestingly, I think, is the fact that Sal Fasano will no longer be managing the New Hampshire Fisher Cats, as he takes becomes the club’s minor league catching coordinator– a position that didn’t exist last year (according to the club’s as-yet-to-be-updated front office directory).

Mike Wilner quashes everybody’s initial thought, saying that he’s been told it’s not a demotion for Fasano, who until today appeared to have been moving up the organization’s managerial ranks. After a successful year with Lansing in 2010, Fasano moved up to New Hampshire, where he stayed the last two seasons, winning the Eastern League’s Manager of the Year award in 2011.

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According to Mel Antonen of assorted baseball writings, Tim Raines is set to join the Blue Jays coaching staff. The former Expos great and poster boy for Hall of Fame arguments involving Jack Morris will be the outfield and base-running coach for the club in 2013. As far as the one 15 second google search I did about the position tells me, the position didn’t exist previously in the organization before this.

Between the gifs, the instagram accounts, R.A. Dickey’s nerditry and now pre-stat-revolution victim-of-circumstance Raines, the Jays 2012 off-season plan clearly included appealing to as many different demographics of fans on the internet as possible.

Got ‘em.

LATE UPDATE: Happy New Year
HANGOVER UPDATE: According to Wilner, Raines is going to be working mostly at the minor league level and will only be helping the Jays big leaguers during Spring Training. STILL THO.

Hentgen always had a keen eye for young talent. And recycled jokes.

According to an official release from the club, the Jays have named former Cy Young winner Pat Hentgen as their bullpen coach for 2013. Hentgen returns to the role that he held in 2011, which he left after one season, citing “family reasons,” as I explained in a post 13 months ago, calling it “yet another blow to Jays fans who, for some reason, give a shit.”

“I mean, obviously nothing against Hentgen,” I said at the time, “but I can’t imagine how anyone could feel the slightest bit wistful about not seeing him stride out to the bullpen after batting practice to go have a nice four hour sit on a folding chair in the bullpen. We haven’t the first fucking clue what Hentgen brought to the role– which isn’t to imply he was bad at it or anything, it’s just, I don’t know how you could react to his departure with anything but a shrug of the shoulders.”

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Goodnight, John Boy

As per an official team release, the coaching staff for your Toronto Fightin’ Gibbers is all but in place, with Demarlo Hale taking a spot as the bench coach as expected, Pete Walker moving up from bullpen coach to the full-on grown up pitching coach, Chad Mottola fulfilling his internet-determined destiny by becoming the Blue Jays new hitting coach. Luis Rivera gets a promotion to third base coach while Dwayne Murphy slips down a few runs to outfield instructor and first base coach. The bullpen coach position remains open – with Pat Hentgen possibly slipping into that role, suggests Mark Zwolinski.

Which means former pitching coach and long-time staffer Bruce Walton joins Don Wakamatsu at Kinkos, printing off copies of his resume and rehearsing answers to “what are you greatest weaknesses?” interview questions. Walton’s tenure as pitching coach was a rocky one, as nearly every pitcher under his watch saw his arm explode or at least randomly catch fire for a few innings.

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Forecast Calls For Hale

As we’ve learned on more than one occasion this off-season already, most clubs deal with the employment status of members of their coaching staff on a year-to-year basis, meaning that– thanks to an abnormally late-coming managerial search– guys like Bruce Walton and Don Wakamatsu remain in limbo, waiting for formal offers to be part of the Jays’ coaching staff next year. In Wakamatsu’s case, however, such a call may not be coming, as the Baltimore Orioles had similarly yet to finalize their staff, and it appears as though DeMarlo Hale is headed to take Wak’s now-former position as the Jays’ bench coach:

Roch Kubatko of MASN is reporting it as well, explaining that “Hale was the last remaining unsigned coach, and the Orioles made him an offer to return next season,” but the Jays will hire him “as their bench coach, according to two industry sources. One source said Hale could receive a three-year contract.”

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Butterfield to the Red Sox

Welp. Here’s where the whole “fuck you and the horse you rode in on, John Farrell” thing gains a little bit more traction, and gets a little bit worse for the Jays. Brian Butterfield, who preceded Farrell here– and has, in fact, been here since the day after Buck Martinez was fired, coming in as a member of Carlos Tosca’s staff– has been scooped up by the Red Sox and their dickbag manager to be the new third base coach in Boston.

Sean McAdam of CSN New England confirms:

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