6:10pm: Hickey has evidently put pen to paper, as Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times tweets that the agreement is “official.”
5:30pm: Chicago is nearing agreement on a deal to bring Jim Hickey aboard as the new pitching coach, Patrick Mooney of NBC Sports Chicago tweets. Hickey long served as the Rays’ pitching coach, including a long run with Maddon. He had reportedly drawn interest from quite a few other organizations as well.
12:22pm: The Cubs announced today that they’ve hired former Red Sox coaches Chili Davis and Brian Butterfield to their staff. Davis will take over for hitting coach John Mallee, who will not return to the organization. Butterfield will be the team’s third base coach, replacing Gary Jones. Additionally, the Cubs announced that minor league hitting coordinator Andy Haines will be the team’s new assistant hitting coach, replacing Eric Hinske, who took a job as the Angels’ hitting coach earlier this week.
Davis and Butterfield were both a part of John Farrell’s coaching staff in Boston through the end of the 2017 season, but the Red Sox gave permission to Farrell’s staff to explore other opportunities. Their hiring in Chicago makes them the second and third members of the Red Sox 2017 coaching staff to take new jobs today alone; Carl Willis was named pitching coach of the Indians earlier this morning.
The 57-year-old Davis enjoyed a highly productive 19-year playing career as an outfielder and DH with the Angels, Giants, Yankees, Twins and Royals. He hit .274/.360/.451 with 350 career homers in just under 10,000 MLB plate appearances and won three World Series rings as a player (’91 Twins, ’98-’99 Yankees).
Since hanging up the spikes, Davis has also emerged as a well-regarded hitting coach, first taking the position with the Athletics (2012-14) before joining the Red Sox (2015-17). He drew interest from the Padres in the same role and has also been listed as a speculative managerial candidate at times. While there are many in the Boston organization that deserve some degree of credit, Davis was the primary voice guiding Boston’s rising crop of young bats, including Mookie Betts, Andrew Benintendi and Xander Bogaerts.
The 59-year-old Butterfield will bring more than two decades of coaching experience to the Cubs. He’s previously held various positions with the Yankees, Blue Jays and D-backs, serving as a first base coach, third base coach and bench coach at the Major League level.