Getty Images

Red Sox hire hitting coach Tim Hyers

2 Comments

The Red Sox added hitting coach Tim Hyers and assistant hitting coach Andy Barkett to Alex Cora’s coaching staff on Saturday, per a team announcement. Hyers is fresh off of a two-year stint as the Dodgers’ hitting coach and director of Minor League hitting, while Barkett recently completed a one-year gig as the Pirates’ Triple-A manager.

Hyers, 46, played first base for the Padres, Tigers and Marlins during the mid-1990s. His major league career flamed out after just four seasons, but he picked up a gig as a hitting coach for the Tigers’ Single-A affiliate in 2002 and later served as an area scout, minor league hitting coordinator and interim coach for the Red Sox. He broke into the majors again when the Dodgers hired him in 2016 and helped the team to two playoff appearances.

“I’m a hitting coach at heart,” he told the Rockdale/Newton Citizen back in August, several weeks before the Dodgers started trudging through a two-week slump. “I don’t want to manage. I love working with hitters. I like the grind, the ups and downs. I was that type of player. I grinded through my career and had some good times and bad times. All players go through it and you’ve got to keep working, trust the process. One big thing is keeping it simple, but also not forgetting about who you are as a player. A lot of them want to do too much. It’s about not forgetting who you are and sticking with your strengths.”

Barkett, 43, lasted several months as an infielder/outfielder for the 2001 Pirates before capping his career in the majors. He has not coached at the big league level yet, but has acquired extensive experience working with the minor league affiliates of the Pirates, Braves, Marlins and Tigers over the last 11 seasons.

Cora will be formally introduced as the Red Sox’ manager on Monday. Excepting bullpen coach and catching instructor Dana Levangie, he’ll be rolling with a brand-new coaching staff for the 2018 season, including first base coach and outfield instructor Tom Goodwin, third base coach and infield instructor Carlos Febles and bench coach Ron Roenicke. He has yet to name a pitching coach.

Report: Momentum in talks between Mariners, Jon Jay

Jon Durr/Getty Images
6 Comments

MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reports that there is some momentum in talks between the Mariners and free agent outfielder Jon Jay.

Jay, 32, hit .296/.374/.375 in 433 plate appearances with the Cubs last season, which is adequate. He’s heralded more for his defense and his ability to play all three outfield spots.

The Mariners are losing center fielder Jarrod Dyson to free agency and likely don’t want to rely on Guillermo Heredia next season, hence the interest in Jay. The free agent class for center fielders is otherwise relatively weak.