Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Red Sox finalize the coaching staff

The Red Sox and John Farrell have finalized their coaching staff for the upcoming season by naming Gregg Colbrunn the hitting coach. and Peter Abraham report that Victor Rodriquez is the leading candidate for the newly created assistant hitting coach position.  Assuming that these two hires go through there are no more openings on the staff for 2013.  Here is a look at how the staff shapes up:

Manager- John Farrell
Bench Coach- Torey Lovullo
Pitching Coach- Juan Nieves
3rd Base Coach- Brian Butterfield
1st Base Coach- Arnie Beyeler
Bullpen Coach- Gary Tuck
Hitting Coach- Gregg Colbrunn
Asst. Hitting Coach- Victor Rodriquez (not yet official)

This has the potential to be the strongest coaching staff we've had since Terry Francona's first few seasons in Boston.  The only noteworthy loss from last year's staff is former 3B coach Jerry Royster.  He was the best 3B coach they've had over the last twenty years or so.  Unfortunately, he had strong ties to last year's manager and had no shot of staying around, but if I had an opening at 3B coach I would certainly hire him if I was a major league manager.  With that being said, from all accounts Brian Butterfield is one of the best coaches in MLB and he will soon make us forget about how good Jerry Royster was.

How far have we fallen? We used to battle with the NYY for American league supremacy and top free agents and now we've resorted to stealing their minor league hitting coaches! In all seriousness Colbrunn seems like a very good up and coming major league hitting coach and I'm not one of those Sox fans that's obsessed with comparing every move we make with the Yankees. In fact I think that is tiresome. I just want the Red Sox to build a strong baseball team that is built to last and not overreact to what other teams may do (like trade for the entire Miami Marlins team).  

In an offseason where Red Sox fans are hoping that the front office makes a lot of smart personnel decisions.  One of the smartest and perhaps underrated decisions they made was to let John Farrell choose his own coaching staff.  No matter how bad last year's manager was he was set up to fail because he wasn't allowed to pick his own coaches and it led to having a divided coaching staff and clubhouse.  If they really wanted to change the chicken and beer clubhouse culture than they should have cleaned house and hired a whole new coaching staff last year, and even though John Farrell has Red Sox connections this new manager and staff feel like a new beginning to this fan.


  1. Also there was a minor trade today that had the Sox sending Zach Stewart to the Pirates for a PTBNL (aka spring training batting practice pitcher). This means the Sox literally got nothing in return for Kevin Youkilis. I repeat nothing.

  2. Make that two minor trades with Sandy Rosario being traded to the Oakland A's for another PTBNL. Both Rosario and Stewart were designated for assignment last week to make room on the 40 man roster for prospects that needed to be protected from the rule V draft.

    1. Wow the Red Sox front office was busy today, better make it three trades as Danny Valencia was traded to Baltimore for cash considerations. Hey Brandon, add 2 PTBNL and some cash to Ben Cherington's best moves of his young career.

  3. I had heard that Colbrunn was considered one of the very best up and coming hitting instructors. Likely he would have a big league job before, but apparently was coaching in the NYY system in his home area and wanted to stay near home for family reasons. He was now ready to jump to the bigs, sounds like a solid addition to a top notch staff to supplement our new manager.

  4. At the time, just about everybody agreed that Youk had to go for a bag of balls because he had turned into a clubhouse snitch/whiner and Willie Middle was ready to take over 3B. But Barry brings up a good point - a bag of balls would have been more than what they did get for him. I know the market for an aging corner infielder on his way to being a light-hitting DH wasn't booming, but to get exactly nothing is a little embarrassing.

    I think this brings up a bigger point: how will Red Sox Nation react to Cherington's job performance if he doesn't make a splashy move or two this winter? If we stay frugal and maintain focus on the long-term and restrain ourselves from signing huge contracts, but have another losing season next year, does Cherington's job become in danger? The Youk trade was awful, the Gomes/Ross signings seem unnecessary, and he hasn't really added any impact major league level talent. His one shining moment was unloading Beckett, Gonzo, and Crawford. I'm not saying I agree with the Nation calling for his job, just wondering if it will start happening.

    For the most part, I agree with the frugal/restrained/long-term know, other than being HUGELY on board with signing Josh Hamilton. I saw on ESPN's Sweetspot blog yesterday that 2 out of 20 respondents in a poll predicted Hamilton to sign with the Red Sox for 5 years and between $120-$135 million. I'm probably standing alone on the Maineiacs blog, but I say go for it. I'm in.

    1. The real kicker on the Youkilis trade was that Willie Middle got hurt and wasn't even able to get all of the playing time we had hoped for when Youk got traded. Perhaps if Youk had stayed and played well down the stretch after Middlebrooks got hurt than we could have got something better for him...or still have him to play 1B. Ultimately it doesn't really matter because Youk's only shot at this point is a PED bounce back year. In other words he's washed up unless he hits the juice a la Clemens in 97.

      Brandon you bring up a good point about how much patience Red Sox Nation will exhibit. So far the majority of fans seem to be on board with the rebuilding process (why is everyone afraid of that term?). But if the Sox have another season that lands them a top ten draft pick how patient will the fans be? My guess is if they start losing games and fall out of playoff contention early you will start to hear people calling for his job. I think most Red Sox fans at least expect an improvement in '13 and they should be in contention for the wild card spots late into the season. As long as they improve in '13 and the future looks bright I think the fans will stay patient. The last thing I'll say on this is that all the perceived problems have been eliminated, the manager, the unmotivated veterans, the bloated contracts and Larry Lucchino seems to have given Ben C some space. All of those are good things, but if the team doesn't improve the attention will soon turn to the GM.

      I'm on record as being dead set against signing Josh Hamilton and that's where I'll stay, (but I will admit that with each passing day my certainty wavers.) Also for the record I am not opposed to the Red Sox spending big money on free agents. I just would prefer them to sign players coming into their primes instead of being on the back side of them.

  5. The Red Sox announced today that Victor Rodriquez will indeed be the assistant hitting coach. That makes the final edition to the coaching staff for '13.

  6. David Carpenter was claimed off waivers today by the Atlanta Braves and we have another player acquired in a trade who is no longer with the team. (This Carpenter was traded to the Sox with John Farrell, not for Theo Epstein)