Blue Jays promote Don Mattingly to offensive coordinator, Guillermo Martinez will return as hitting coach
Photo credit:Peter Aiken-USA TODAY Sports
By Thomas Hall19 days ago
The Toronto Blue Jays have made a few changes to their coaching staff for the 2024 season, although that’s since caused quite an uproar amongst the franchise’s fan base.
With the annual GM meetings underway in Arizona, the Blue Jays went to work on finding a replacement for the retired Luis Rivera, announcing on Tuesday that former Boston Red Sox third base coach Carlos Febles – who was relieved of his duties last month – has been hired to serve in the same position.
Additionally, general manager Ross Atkins also revealed Don Mattingly will be more involved on the hitting side following his promotion as an offensive coordinator, as well as remaining as the bench coach to skipper John Schneider.
Mattingly’s return to the Blue Jays isn’t guaranteed, as the 2020 NL Manager of the Year is reportedly slated to interview for the Milwaukee Brewers’ managerial opening, which his current employer won’t prevent him from pursuing. But if he stays, the 62-year-old will assume much larger responsibilities in his second season on Toronto’s staff.
Many baseball fans north of the border, however, don’t appear to be thrilled with this recent announcement. And, as you might expect, that crowd didn’t shy away from voicing their displeasure on social media.
Adding fuel to the fire, some Blue Jays fans were likely reeling even harder after learning Guillermo Martínez will return as the organization’s hitting coach in 2024, despite most calling for his termination amid a disastrous offensive performance this past season.
Toronto’s lineup posted underwhelming power results during the 2023 season, finishing 16th in home runs (188) across the majors just one year after they ranked seventh (200) in that regard and third in slugging percentage (.431).
One member who won’t return to the big-league staff is Dave Hudgens, who’s been reassigned to a hybrid role at the organization’s player development complex in Florida, where he’ll serve as a mentor and identify potential external hitting targets to acquire.
Atkins announced a few other changes to the Blue Jays’ staff, dismissing coach Adam Yudelman and mental skills coach Jimmy Van Ostrand from their respective positions. He also said the Blue Jays are open to making further coaching additions this winter.
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