Blue Jays vice president of baseball operations Ben Cherington and Brewers assistant general manager Matt Arnold will get second interviews this week for the Pirates’ GM vacancy, per Jon Heyman of MLB Network and reporter Robert Murray. Cherington and Arnold are reportedly two of three finalists to take over in Pittsburgh. Pirates assistant GM Kevan Graves seems to be competing with them, as Rob Biertempfel of The Athletic tweets that he also appears likely to receive another interview. Meanwhile, even though the Pirates technically don’t have a GM right now, they’re also carrying on their search for a manager. Twins bench coach Derek Shelton has been particularly impressive to the club thus far, Heyman relays.
More staff news from around baseball…
- Cubs first base coach Will Venable has been popular in managerial searches in recent weeks. The Cubs discussed their job with Venable prior to their David Ross hiring, and he also sat down with the Giants in regards to their position before they selected Gabe Kapler. Now that Venable’s not going to land a managerial job this offseason (unless Pittsburgh pursues him), the former major league outfielder will stay where he is. He’ll be one of the Cubs’ base coaches in 2020, Bruce Levine of 670 The Score tweets. The Cubs have at least one opening for those positions, as third base coach Brian Butterfield left to take the same role with the Angels.
- The Mets are closing in on a deal to retain hitting coach Chili Davis, Jon Heyman of MLB Network tweets. The former big league slugger is fresh off his first year with the Mets, whose offense made strides on his watch. Davis helped the club to the majors’ 13th-most runs and its seventh-highest wRC+ (104).
- The Tigers have hired Josh Paul as their quality control coach, the team announced. Paul served as the the Angels’ bench coach over the previous three years, but the Halos fired him after this season. The 44-year-old Paul was previously a major league catcher and then a well-regarded assistant in the Yankees organization.
- Nationals assistant hitting coach Joe Dillon is a legitimate candidate to become the Phillies’ hitting coach, Heyman suggests. Dillon has been working under Nats hitting coach Kevin Long, who’s a favorite of new Phillies manager Joe Girardi, as Heyman points out. Long was the Yankees’ hitting coach for part of Girardi’s tenure as their manager. Dillon, meanwhile, is an ex-major league infielder/outfielder who has two years’ experience as a coach at the game’s highest level.
- Scott Coolbaugh is the White Sox’s new assistant hitting coach, the club announced. Coolbaugh was the Orioles’ hitting coach from 2015-18 and the Dodgers’ Triple-A hitting coach this season. He’ll team with White Sox new HC Frank Menechino in his new role.