Tigers nearing decision on pitching coach

The Tigers are nearing a decision on their next pitching coach.

“Getting closer,” manager Brad Ausmus said in a text message Monday evening.

Among those in the running for the job are minor-league pitching coordinator A.J. Sager and veteran Major League pitching coach Steve McCatty. The Tigers talked with both as part of what was a large group of initial candidates last week. Others who have been expected to be considered include former Tigers pitcher and ex-Astros pitching coach Doug Brocail.

A final decision could be held up by the start of the World Series Tuesday. Teams are discouraged from making announcements during Major League Baseball’s signature event.

Like retired Tigers pitching coach Jeff Jones, McCatty has local ties, graduating from Troy High School, attending Macomb Community College and making his offseason home in the area. McCatty served as Tigers pitching coach in 2002 after six years in the farm system, then got another chance with the Nationals in 2009. He held the job until a few weeks ago, when he was let go with manager Matt Williams. McCatty has close ties with Jones, who was expected to consult with the Tigers on the process after announcing his retirement last week.

Sager pitched with the Tigers for parts of three seasons, then worked his way up the organization as an instructor, including pitching coach jobs at Class A West Michigan, Double-A Erie and Triple-A Toledo. He spent the last couple seasons as pitching coordinator.

Whoever gets the job inherits a pitching staff led by veteran starters Justin Verlander and Anibal Sanchez but supported by several young arms, among them Daniel Norris, Matt Boyd, Ian Krol, Shane Greene, Buck Farmer, Drew VerHagen, Kyle Ryan and Bruce Rondon. Detroit’s 4.64 ERA ranked as the highest in the American League in 2015, a sharp departure from four straight division titles behind a dominant starting rotation, but is expected to make a jump with better health and experience along with an infusion of free-agent talent.

11 Comments

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McCatty would be my choice.

First pitch, Cespedes aided HR inside the park.The Tigers were 12th in pitches, 3.84 /AB. KC, 3.70 last in MLB.
Pitchers will try to be 0-1. Swing early is the right approach. Escobar was sitting on the fastball, he even said it before the game ,and Harvey went for the middle
Cespedes ran it badly

I just watched the highlight of the world series game last night, can’t bring myself to watch KC right now. What kind of a catch attempt was that by Cespedes that led to an inside the park homerun?

KC has enjoyed a tremendous amount of luck to get this far but all teams need some lucky breaks to advance through a season into the playoffs. It just seems they’ve had a lot more breaks than their opponents.

KC plays hard and alert so that will bring them some breaks but yeah, seems they’re getting more than one would expect. It helps when a team expects to win.
Last night’s ESPN and AP reporting backs up what I said the other day about believing what you read or hear.

Rich, they definitely have that attitude this season after getting stopped short in game 7 last year’s WS at 3rd base. I believe you said it earlier, perhaps its best to have KC get their WS title and be done with it even though I may be rooting for the METS. But it appears they may have a good, solid core of position players, solid BP depth and advanced scouting that the Tigers lack. Tigers may have a good core but seem to lack in the other areas. I’m still going to Lakeland in early March as its always a great time to have hope and dreams! Hope to see some of you fellow bloggers in Lakeland next year.

I hadn’t planned to attend spring training for the first time in 8 years but now it appears I’ll be there again; albeit for only one or two games.

I think Cespedes may have lost the ball to begin with. Picked it back up.
I like him but there is something about him that is just “off”. I have a feeling he has tendencies to be giving less than 100%.
I tend to like players that are all in like Pillar in TO. Gose gives it pretty good. So does Collins for that matter.
Cespedes is going to cost a whack of dough so if they are going to spend for an outfielder they may as well go for free agent LHB Heyward or even Parra.

Those three guys mentioned are trying to establish themselves. Cespedes has literally kicked two balls away from him in this postseason. How weird is that? He is definitely not coming back to Detroit anyway.

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