The Cardinals still don’t know whether Tony La Russa will manage in 2011. But his longtime sidekick, pitching coach Dave Duncan, is locked in for at least one more year.
Duncan told Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on Thursday that he would like to coach for three more seasons in St. Louis before retiring.
“The ideal situation would not be to coach in St. Louis for one more year then find another place for two more years,” Duncan said. “The ideal situation would be to coach three years in the same place.”
Duncan has voiced frustration in the past about the organization’s handling of the minor league ranks and a lack of a club-wide pitching philosophy, but those issues have mostly been cleared up and the 65-year-old former catcher is now consulted by farm director Josh Vuchs on nearly every pitching-relate move.
Duncan has served as a pitching coach in the major leagues for close to 30 seasons now and is surely ready for an extended vacation, but his rotation in 2011 will feature two Cy Young Award candidates in Chris Carpenter and Adam Wainwright, and also young left-hander Jaime Garcia. If the Cardinals manage to work out a deal with free agent righty Jake Westbrook, even better.