Monday, January 12, 2015

The New York Yankees announce their coaching staff for 2015

The New York Yankees made official their coaching staff on Monday.  Jeff Pentland takes over as the new hitting coach after they let go of Kevin Long.  The Yankees for the first time in their history will also have an assistant hitting coach and they shuffled some of the other coaches as well as naming a new infield coach who will also serve as the 3B coach.  Alan Cockrell will be the assistant hitting coach and Joe Espada is the new infield/3B coach.  Tony Pena who was the bench coach will move to 1B and Rob Thompson will move from 3B to the bench coach. 

Pentland is 68 years old and he will begin his 17th season as a hitting coach.  He was with the Marlins in 1996, the Cubs from 1997-2002, Royals from 2003-2005, Mariners from 2006-08 and the Dodgers from 2008-2011.  In 2012 he was the hitting coach for Seattle AAA team in Tacoma and last season he was the hitting coordinator in Miami's player development system.  He was a scout for the Marlins in 92-93 before becoming a hitting coach and in 1997 was a minor league hitting coordinator for the New York Mets.  He was an assistant coach at Mesa community college before becoming a major league coach.  He started there in 1972 then went to Arizona State University from 1983-91.  He was at the University of California, Riverside in 1974 and assistant athletic director for Wichita State University in 1973.  He earned his bachelors and masters degrees from Arizona State University.  He was a member of the schools 1967 championship team and was later inducted into their hall of fame in 2002.  He spent three seasons in the San Diego Padres minor league system from 1969-71 as a left-handed batter.  He played first base, outfield, catcher and pitcher. 

Espada will begin his fifth season as a major league third base coach.  He held the same position for the Marlins from 2010-2013.  He was a professional scout for the Yankees last season, has also been a minor league hitting coach in 2006 and 2007.  in 2008 and 2009 he was the minor league infield coordinator for the Marlins.  He is a native of Puerto Rico and was selected by Oakland in the second round of the 1996  first year player draft.  He played nine minor league seasons from 1996-2004.  He played one season in independent ball in 2005 and combined to bat 286 with 24 homeruns and 287 RBI in 779 games. 

Cockrell is 52 and will begin his fourth stint as a member of a major league coaching staff.  He was a hitting coach for the Rockies in 2002 and 2007 and 2008.  He was a hitting coach for the Mariners in 2009-2010.  In 2007 the Rockies led the NL in in batting avg(280), hits(1591),  and OBP(354).  He is a former outfielder who was selected by the Giants as the ninth overall selection in the 1984 first year player draft.  He played in 1,414 career minor league games from 1984-1996. He batted 278 and made his major league debut with the Rockies in 1996 playing in nine games and batting 250.    

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