The 2010 Orioles had some problems, to say the least. Buck Showalter has been basically handed the keys to the organization for the next few years, and as of today, it’s looking more and more like the coaching staff will be totally revamped for next season. That is, hopefully a new crew in Baltimore could help to fix some of those 2010 problems.
Here’s a look at the staff of 2010 and the possible changes that could come for the 2011 season.
Just to go over the personnel Tremuel left Buck with in 2010:
Terry Crowley – Hitting Coach: The Crow is expected to stay in the organization, but in a different capacity. Whether he will work through the minor league system or help players in some other coaching fashion, we do not know. What we can be more sure of is that he will not be the hitting coach.
Rick Kranitz – Pitching Coach: Kranny is unlikely to return as pitching coach in my mind, with Buck having so many connections, and now the Yankees PC job opening up. It just seems like he may have the opportunity to go to New York, therefore making it easier for Buck to let him go and hire his own guy.
Jeff Datz – Bench Coach: Who knows with this guy. He supposedly helped Wieters a ton this season with defensive catching, but otherwise, I never see him doing anything. With Eric Wedge being hired in Seattle, many people think Datz will join him there (Datz was Wedge’s bench coach in Cleveland). I also would think Buck’s biggest thought would be to bring on a bench coach he knows, since that IS the guy he goes to for talking and deliberating decisions during games.
Alan Dunn – Bullpen Coach: I wasn’t sure about this spot coming in to the off-season, but it is now looking more and more like Dunn will not be retained by the Orioles. A favorite of mine, Dunn would most likely get a position elsewhere in the league, having a respectable skill set in coaching in the league.
Ronnie Deck – Bullpen Catcher: Had to throw this one in there. He’s just a personal favorite. I fully expect him to return to Baltmore from his home in Oklahoma for the 2011 season.
With all of the speculation going on, Ken Rosenthal posted this today on Twitter, giving a lot of insight into what we should expect to hear from Buck Showalter in the next few weeks:
“Sources: M. Connor leading candidate for Orioles pitching coach, R. Adair for bullpen coach. Team also has permission to interview W. Kirby from Rangers’ org. J. Presley possible hitting coach. B. Ripken and/or M. Bordick also figure to end up on staff.”
Connor was Showalter’s pitching coach in Arizona, so that one makes a lot of sense. It is up to him, though, to rearrange this staff in the way that he thinks will help this team to succeed in 2011 and beyond. Somebody that Rosenthal did not mention but figures to be in the mix for bench coach or another spot is Don Wakamatsu, former Mariners manager. Wakamatsu is a smart baseball man, and was Showalter’s bench coach during his time managing in Texas.
In Buck we trust.