Rookie Orioles manager Brandon Hyde’s staff is starting to come together. Hyde will hire Don Long to work as the Orioles’ hitting coach, Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com reports. Additionally, the Orioles will tab Arnie Beyeler to coach first base, while Jose Flores – whom the O’s hired in December – is “expected” to serve as their third base coach and infield instructor, per Kubatko.
The 56-year-old Long will succeed Scott Coolbaugh, who was Baltimore’s hitting coach from 2015-18 and is now with the Dodgers organization. A former minor league infielder with the Giants, Long spent the past half-decade as the Reds’ hitting coach, but they replaced him with Turner Ward in November. For what it’s worth, the Reds’ Long-led offense ranked eighth in the majors in walk rate, 17th in wRC+ and 18th in runs in 2018.
In Baltimore, Long will be tasked with helping to improve an offense which wallowed toward the bottom of the league last year. However, considering the rebuilding Orioles are short on talent, it’s unlikely they expect Long’s presence to make a major statistical impact in 2019.