Yanks officially firm up coaching staff

The End of An Era
With free agents looming, Swisher just the beginning

Lost amidst the brouhaha of the Nick Swisher was a press release from the Yanks announcing what we knew a few weeks ago about the coaching staff: Rob Thomson is the new third base coach; Tony Peña will serve as Joe Girardi‘s bench coach; and Mick Kelleher will be the Coach In Charge of Lighting a Fire Under Robinson Cano‘s Ass first base coach. This announcement is just a formality as these changes were reported a few weeks ago.

The End of An Era
With free agents looming, Swisher just the beginning
  • Count Zero

    I actually think the key move here was moving Peña to the bench. We haven’t really had a good bench coach since Zim — Tony might just turn out well.

    • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.

      How exactly can you – as a fan – rate a bench coach?

      • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

        Annnnnd it took 5 minutes. lol.

        • Count Zero

          And another 6 minutes for the sycophant to chime in with a “Yeah – what he said.”

          Give it a rest…

      • Count Zero

        Are you going to tell me Torre didn’t manage the pen better, use the safety squeeze better when Zim was the bench coach? You have a short memory…

      • Count Zero

        And let me just add that both of these comments are exactly the type of snarky response which is driving the comments on this blog down…

        You and I and many others have been here for a really long time and we liked it here because we dealt in pretty intelligent discussion. And I get it — a bunch of other people came along and started pulling comments out of their asses and we got tired of hearing it, so we started getting frustrated.

        But the standard of the day has now become for a small group to respond to everything they don’t agree with by immediately making a snarky, sarcastic comment. I suggest that this is neither constructive, nor productive. You are now doing just as much to drag things down as the people who blame A-Rod for everything, declare Hughes a bust, etc. Think about it.

        Take your frustrations out somewhere else…

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

          I think Jamal asked a perfectly reasonable question. You overreacted with your answer, and even I’m not quite sure how a fan with little to no knowledge of what goes on in the dugout or clubhouse could objectively rate a bench coach.

          • Count Zero

            Objectively — can’t be done. We agree — there’s no metric for such.

            Subjectively however, we all recognize that Torre’s strength as a manager was not tactical (vs. say Bobby V.) His strength was ego management, media relations. When he was at his most successful, he was clearly receiving input from someone who understood tactics a lot better than he did. The safety-squeezes, the perfectly-timed Knoblauch-Jeter hit and run situations, the tactically-perfect use of lefty-righty matchups in the ’96 WS where he maneuvered Bobby Cox into bad PH matchups against guys like Graeme Lloyd…I remember watching all these things. Don’t you? Zim and Torre flat-out gamed Cox in ’96.

            Once Zim left, all that went away. (I guess maybe you could look at how many safety squeezes the Yankees executed Zim vs. post-Zim?) So while I may not be able to prove it, I know that when his mind left the bench, Torre’s tactical ability went down the tubes. Anyone is free to disagree with that evaluation since it’s subjective, but I think most knowledgeable fans would agree with it.

            I would love to be able to measure everything — it’s my mantra in business as well. You can’t properly evaluate what you don’t measure. But some things have no available metric at this time. That doesn’t mean they don’t exist or cannot be roughly analyzed by someone who watches a lot of baseball.

            Do you honestly believe that Zim had no effect on Torre’s in-game tactics while he was here? Honestly? If you can say “yes” to that with a straight face then I’ll buy your (and Jamal’s) question. But knowing what I know about you two, I doubt you will argue that Zim as bench coach = Thomson as bench coach. And if you agree that Zim > Thomson (or Girardi, or Randolph, or Maz), then how can you argue that there is no way to evaluate a bench coach? You have made a similar evaluation yourself.

            And that’s why I reacted to the comment — because I think every one of you agrees that Zim > et. al. And yet you ask the question just to be snarky.

            • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

              I truly don’t think Jamal was asking that to be snarky. It does seem that Zimmer was a better bench coach than most, but we’re just going on innuendo and the fact that the Yanks haven’t made the World Series since he left. That could just be a coincidence.

              • Count Zero

                Understood — my apologies for overreacting then.

                And don’t get me wrong — I don’t see any bench coach making more than a 3-5 win difference so it’s not all that important. But I think there’s more here than the anecdotal evidence of WS appearances. I think there was a change in Torre’s in-game tactics post-Zim. Given that Torre remained Torre — I see the main variable as Zim which is what leads me to the subjective conclusion that the Yankees were better tactically (which doesn’t necessarily translate to winning anything) when Zim was the bench coach.

                I would also point out that we all make evaluations of this type all the time despite the lack of objective metrics. E.g., there are no solid independent metrics upon which to evaluate GMs, scouting, or even managers for that matter — yet we all have opinions on the competence (or lack thereof) of Billy Beane, Brian Cashman, Ozzie Guillen, etc., etc. ;-)

    • E-ROC

      Joe Girardi was a bench coach for Joe Torre.

  • SWB

    Can the Yankees really go into a season expecting to win a title with Damon Gardner Nady in the outfield and Swish at first? Ecspecially with the possibility Posada isn’t going to be in 2007 form and who knows with Cano and Jeter another year older. I think either Manny or Tex has to be in our lineup on opening day

    • Mike Pop

      Agreed bro.. Our lineup would be absolutely terrifying with one of them in there.. Also Swisher is unlikely to give the same production as Abreu..But Who knows Swish might rebound to 06 ? Form and hit 35 hrs.. I hope he does

      • BigBlueAL

        As long as they sign CC, another starter and Wang/Joba are healthy all season long, along with the new and improved bullpen, their pitching will believe it or not more than makeup for the “lack” of offense next season.

        I think the Swisher trade was a great move, and remember next season is an odd year, so Arod will win the MVP and his offense alone will more than makeup for the rest of the “horrible” lineup!!!!

  • http://sevenheaven godfather

    i’d love both teix and swish but only if they keep the former signing at seven years or less; they get more athletic without giambino and bobby, and much more flexible…and a tad younger; do that, then focus on pitching….anything after that is holiday fare