Nationals third base coach Bob Henley and first base coach Randy Knorr won’t be returning to the staff next season, as The Washington Post’s Jesse Dougherty reports that the club has reassigned the two coaches to player-development jobs. These could be the only changes made to manager Davey Martinez’s staff, as the other five coaches have been asked to return in their current roles.
Henley was a 26th-round draft pick for the Expos in 1991, and apart from one game with the Pirates A-ball affiliate in 2002, he has spent his entire baseball career in the Expos/Nationals organization. After working as a manager and field coordinator at the minor league level, Henley joined Washington’s coaching staff in 2013 and has worked as the third base coach for seven of the past eight seasons.
Knorr’s tenure with the club also dates back to the Nationals’ days in Montreal, as he played for the Expos in 2001 and then played three seasons for the team’s Triple-A affiliate before retiring from playing. Knorr has worked as a minor league manager and worked in player development in between three separate stints on Washington’s big league coaching staff, working as a bullpen coach and bench coach in the past before his 2021 assignment as the first base coach.
Beyond their official titles, Knorr and Henley were also baserunning coaches, and Henley worked as an outfield coach. It isn’t yet known if the replacements will take over those additional duties, or if the Nationals might expand their staff with a new position or two.
Of the other five members of the staff, Dougherty writes that hitting coach Kevin Long “becomes the biggest question mark” to be in D.C. in 2022, as Long “is open to returning again, though he will consider other opportunities.” Long will likely require a multi-year contract to come back for his fifth season as the Nationals’ hitting coach. His first deal with the team was a three-year contract (rather an unusually lengthy commitment for a coach), and he agreed to return on a one-year pact for 2021.