Results tagged ‘ Terry Crowley ’
With Tuesday’s news that longtime Orioles hitting coach Terry Crowley will move to a hitting evaluator position, a Major League source said on Friday that he expects Jim Presley to soon sign a two-year deal to become manager Buck Showalter’s hitting coach in Baltimore.
Presley was also in the running to join new Atlanta manager Fredi Gonzalez’s staff. He served as Gonzalez’s hitting coach in Florida, but the Braves are thought to be pursuing other candidates.
Showalter would not confirm or deny that Presley was in line to be hired, but told MLB.com on Friday afternoon that Presley -who reportedly is in the mix for several organizations — is on a very short list of candidates, a list which he expects to close in on in the coming days.
A Major League player for eight seasons, Presley worked with Showalter as the hitting coach in Arizona from the D-backs’ inaugural 1998 season until 2000. He became the Marlins’ hitting coach in ’06 and was dismissed on June 23, along with Gonzalez and bench coach Carlos Tosca. A former American League All-Star, Presley was long rumored to be a candidate to join Showalter’s staff, along with Rick Down, Showalter’s hitting coach in New York and Astros Minor League hitting coordinator Mike Barnett.
The Orioles’ offense finished next-to-last among American League teams this season in runs scored, and spent the first two-thirds of the year ranked near the bottom of the Majors in batting average with runners in scoring position, RBIs and walks.
Crowley’s newly created role will involve him working closely with the Minor League side of the organization and applying the 63-year-old’s expertise in areas including scouting and the First-Year Player Draft. He has spent the past 12 seasons as the Orioles’ hitting coach and has been with the organization for two separate stints totaling 16 years. The O’s have yet to make an official announcement on Crowley’s new post, although he has also been tabbed by Showalter to give his input on his successor.
Both Showalter and Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail will be present for the organizational meetings, which are slated to begin on Monday in Phoenix. And although MacPhail said it would be “pretty ambitious” to reach a final decision on staffing over the weekend, he did tell MLB.com on Wednesday that the organization will have a pretty good idea where things stand by then. Showalter, who will meet with MacPhail back in Baltimore on Saturday, reiterated that sentiment on Friday.
When the Orioles do make an announcement, it will most likely be for Showalter’s entire staff. The four vacant managerial openings around the League has slowed that process, with former Mariners manager Don Wakamatsu — a rumored favorite to serve as Showalter’s bench coach –believed to be in the running for one of those positions.
In addition to Crowley, Showalter inherited pitching coach Rick Kranitz, bench coach Jeff Datz, bullpen coach Alan Dunn, first-base coach John “T-Bone” Shelby and third-base coach Gary Allenson. Rangers special assistant Mark Connor is believed to be the leading candidate to join Showalter’s staff as pitching coach, although Kranitz -who is also in the mix to join Yankees’ manager Joe Girardi — is thought highly of by Showalter and could still be retained.
It is possible Showalter keeps several of the coaches on staff, although it could require a change in roles. He has also made it clear that he wants to retain the old “Oriole Way,” making it plausible to give expanded roles to former players, including Minor League offensive coordinator Mike Bordick, who is expected to be at next week’s organizational meetings along with a good portion of next spring’s coaching staff.
Some Orioles-related news from Arlington, where I’m helping out ALCS coverage…
Longtime Toronto third base coach Brian Butterfield told MLB.com earlier today that, as far as he knows, he’s still in the mix for to replace retired skipper Cito Gaston. Butterfield also expressed a desire to manage and the article also goes on to state the Blue Jays timetable could come as early as next week.
What does this mean for the Orioles? Hopefully, it will shed some clarity on the Buck Showalter’s coaching staff decisions. Butterfield is believed to be a leading candidate to join Showalter’s staff as a third base coach, but all of the openings around baseball has caused a holdup in that regard.
As I blogged on Tuesday, there’s a lot of moving parts with the coaching staff, and some of that could also depend on two teams playing now: the Rangers and Yankees.
Rangers special assistant Mark
Connor’s name has been mentioned as a candidate to become Showalter’s pitching coach, a role he
served when Buck was in Texas. Connor is currently a Minor League
consultant in the Rangers organization.
Yankees third base coach Rob
Thomson is another name to keep tabs on. Thomas figures heavily in New
York’s scouting and Spring Training and is incredibly well-liked and
respected for his work. He’s in his 21st season in the Yankees
organization, which is where he crossed paths with Showalter, and
although it’s unclear whether he would be open to leaving it’s an option
worth mentioning, particularly since all of Yankees manager Joe Girardi’s coaches’ contracts are up after this season.
Also, this is worth another mention. Despite several news outlets reporting definitively that hitting coach Terry Crowey is returning next season, Showalter has been adamant that nothing is set in stone. A scenario where Crowley comes
back as some kind of instructor or roving role isn’t out of the
question. That’s important to note because on Thursday afternoon, the Baltimore Sun, citing several unnamed sources furthered that idea and said it has been discussed on a preliminary basis within the organization. According to that report, nothing has been finalized.
Showalter sat down with principal owner Peter Angelos and president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail today for a state of the union of sorts. Typically, this is just Angelos and MacPhail who have the yearly meeting, but Showalter has made it no secret that he desires an active role in all facets of the Orioles.
I’m not sure how much they discussed the coaching staff, since much of that depends on what happens with openings around MLB, but their offseason needs and payroll moving forward were both on the docket.