The Twins have announced a pair of coaching hires, bringing on former Padres’ manager Jayce Tingler as their new bench coach and officially announcing the previously-reported hiring of David Popkins as hitting coach.
Tingler is coming off a tumultuous season in San Diego, his second campaign as the bench boss for the Padres. Things seemed to be going well after the first year, as 2020 saw the Padres go 37-23 and then qualify for the expanded 2020 playoffs, eventually falling to the rival Dodgers in the NLDS. The subsequent months only heightened enthusiasm for 2021, as the club made various high-profile additions, including Blake Snell, Yu Darvish and Joe Musgrove. The beginning of 2021 seemed to be going according to plan, as they hovered in the divisional race with the Dodgers and Giants through the first few months of the season. However, the second half saw the team undergo a precipitous slide, falling out of the playoff race and even below .500, along with reports that Tingler had lost the respect of the players and control of the clubhouse. Shortly after the season ended, Tingler was fired and eventually replaced by Bob Melvin, whom the Padres lured away from the Athletics.
It had been previously reported that the Padres offered him an opportunity to stay in some capacity, but he will instead head to the Twin Cities for 2022. It was announced in September that the previous bench coach, Bill Evers, would be retiring after the 2021 season, creating the vacancy that Tingler will now be filling.