Apparently former Braves players who never really hit all that much are the new inefficiency when it comes to batting coaches: Ken Rosenthal reports that the Mariners have interviewed former Brave and — more importantly for our purposes — former Phillies hitting coach Milt Thompson for their opening at hitting coach. I guess they’re not all that interested in former Brave and former Mariner Jim Presley like the O’s are. A shame, really.
For what it’s worth, Thompson got a lot of credit for being a good hitting coach when the Phillies used to beat the hell out of the ball, and then got fired when they stopped doing so in the middle of the season. Of course, a new hitting coach didn’t help them figure out how to hit the hell out of the ball again, so maybe — and I know I’m talikin’ crazy here — the hitting coach doesn’t really matter all that much.
Of course, we know what happens next: the Mariners hire Thompson, and they improve. Which is inevitable, because they just posted one of the worst offensive seasons in modern memory. When they do, Thompson — or whoever gets the job — will be praised as some kind of Svengali and regression to the mean will be ignored like a middle child. Typical.
But hey, timing is everything.