Saturday, October 20, 2007

New Coaches for Yankees?

Since the Yankees have announced that Joe Torre turned down a one-year incentive laden contract the team will be on the lookout for a new manager and probably new coaches as well.

None of the coaches are under contract for next season and that is not going to change for the time being. "I've made them aware that I'm not able to guarantee them positions until we have a manager,” general manager Brian Cashman said to Newsday.

With Don Mattingly said to be the favorite to replace Torre it is likely the Yankees will have to replace him as bench coach. No word has come as to who it might be, but it might be wise for Joe Girardi to at least consider the position. He was the former bench coach before taking the job as the Florida Marlin’s manager in 2006. Girardi also has aspirations to manage the Yankees, but as a first year manager for a team desperate to get back to the World Series Mattingly could be on a short leash should he get the job.

First base coach Tony Pena might also be on the move. He has already been rumored to be a possibility for the position of Houston Astros manager and now he is up for the job as Yankees manager as well according to Sports Illustrated.

Third base coach Larry Bowa may jump ship to coach in Seattle. He is a former coach for the team who this week asked for and received permission to interview Bowa for a job according to Newsday.

Pitching coach Ron Guidry could also be on the move. The Yankees are rumored not to be happy with him after the staff ERA was ranked eighth out of 14 American League teams. The two poor pitching performances of Chien-Ming Wang also reflect negatively on him. Once a new manager comes in, like Tony LaRussa for instance, he may want to bring in his own pitching coach. Dave Duncan would be the coach in this case as he has been with LaRussa from Oakland to St. Louis. He also has a son on the team, Shelly Duncan.

Another possible pitching coach replacement could be Dave Eiland. Eiland was the pitching coach for Scranton and has experience working with Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, and Ian Kennedy. If he doesn’t get the job as pitching coach he may even replace Joe Kerrigan as bullpen coach.

After the Scranton Yankees season ended Eiland joined the bombers for September. It was at that point that Hughes’ season turned around. Hughes had a 3-0 record with a 2.73 ERA down the stretch.

The only coach who is likely to keep his current position is hitting coach Kevin Long. During Long’s first season as a coach the Yankees lead baseball in runs scored and batting average. Many players praised the job he did working with them especially Alex Rodriguez and Doug Meintkiewicz.

More Yankee and other NY area sports news should be read at Hot Stove New York.

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