It's crazy to think about this but the Yankees will have their third hitting coach in the last three years when Spring Training kicks off next year. It's frustrating. Will the third time finally be the charm? God we hope so.
So earlier this week the Yankees released Jeff Pentland, part of the new tag team duo read THE YANKEES JUST FIRED SOME COACHES in case you missed it. I admired that the Yankees tried something new to try and get this team hitting again but it didn't work. From August until the end of the season the team looked like the walking dead. We knew someone had to get the axe. Now the problem is....who gets the new job? We have a few ideas.
1) Raul Ibanez
It's not a far stretch, both the Yankees and Ibanez himself were interested once upon a time. We even wrote about it in IBANEZ IS CURIOUS ABOUT THE YANKEES HITTING COACH JOB. I still like the idea as a matter of fact and if Ibanez still wants to get his feet wet and be a coach this would be a great place to start. Ibanez is respected and he knows the organization. He was also an accomplished hitter with 305 home runs and an .801OPS in 19 seasons. I think he would be a great fir for the organization.
2) Hideki Matsui
Who wouldn't want to see Godzilla back in the dugout again? His name has been mentioned again, especially after spending time as Brian Cashman's special advisor. Matsui has been praised for his ability to work with the minor league prospects this season. He has been credited with being very observant, and approachable. He was a big part of the Yankees success in 2009 and the man could hit. He has a great eye, but he is enjoying his current role and considering he has a young three year old he may not be ready for this kind of a gig.
3) Marcus Thames
I don't think Thames is getting enough attention. He is the Yankees AAA hitting coach and helped them clinch their division this season. One reason that this choice intrigues me is that he already has a rapport with both the seasoned players and some of the current kids we watched all season long. After all, he knows Greg Bird, Aaron Judge, and Rob Refsnyder very well. He is making an impact in the minors, and he was with the Yankees back in 2010. He can work with the kids and the veterans, and I like that.
4) Tino Martinez
He's been a hitting coach before, right? Sure, things in Miami didn't work out for Tino but New York could be a lot different. Tino knows what it is like to be a Yankee. He also knows about the expectations the Yankees will have. He did have a guest coaching appearance this year during Spring Training where he was rumored to be considering a longer term gig, read that HERE. Maybe that opportunity is finally here. He was a fan favorite, and he played in some pivotal games as a Yankee. Maybe he can bring back that spark to get the guys back to winning playoff games.
5) Don Mattingly
OK, so there are many articles out there on the Internet saying this is an unlikely fit. Maybe it is, but you have to admit that the timing is perfect. Casey said as much...
Look, Mattingly is a legend. I was excited for him when he finally got a managing job with the Dodgers. He is a smart baseball man. No that he has managerial experience he only has more skills to bring to the table. He had a rough gig because his team was built in a "World Series or BUST" scenario. That's a lot of pressure and I think he could be in that position here and thrive at it. It may be time for him to return to where he played his entire career and started as a coach. Maybe it is destiny.Maybe the timing's right to bring in Don Mattingly as the @Yankees next hitting coach. #TimingIsEverything #BYB— Robert Casey (@BleednYankeeBlu) October 22, 2015
It's going to be an interesting off season. There are a lot of good candidates out there, but it is hard to tell what ownership is thinking. It would be nice to finally have some stability on this team and some results. Change is coming....who do you want as the next hitting coach? Comment and tell us.
--Jeana Bellezza, BYB Senior Writer and Editor
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