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A’s revamp coaching staff for 2022, add some new names

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Tommy Everidge and Chris Cron join as hitting coaches

Oakland Athletics v Boston Red Sox
Tommy Everidge

The Oakland A’s have a new manager, and he has now finished selecting his coaching staff.

The A’s announced their coaches for the 2022 season on Friday, led by rookie skipper Mark Kotsay. The group includes three new additions, while all five remaining incumbents were retained, though some of the holdovers were shifted to different roles.

Here’s the full list:

  • Manager: Mark Kotsay
  • Bench: Brad Ausmus
  • 1st base: Eric Martins
  • 3rd base: Darren Bush
  • Pitching: Scott Emerson
  • Bullpen: Marcus Jensen
  • Hitting: Tommy Everidge
  • Asst Hitting: Chris Cron
  • Quality Control: Mike Aldrete
  • Note: Martins also serves as infield coach, and Bush also serves as “run prevention coach”

The shakeup began early in the offseason, when manager Bob Melvin and bench coach Ryan Christenson left for the San Diego Padres. Kotsay was promoted from 3B coach to manager, leaving two holes to fill at bench and 3B.

The bench coach job went to Brad Ausmus, which was reported a week ago. He has five years of experience as an MLB manager.

Also joining the staff are Tommy Everidge as hitting coach, and Chris Cron as assistant hitting coach.

Everidge spent the past eight seasons coaching in the A’s minor league system, beginning in short-season Low-A ball in 2014 and consistently moving up the ladder until reaching Triple-A in 2021. Before that, most of his playing career came with Oakland as well, as a slugging first baseman with strong plate discipline. The A’s drafted him out of Sonoma State University in 2004, and after several summers on the farm he made it to MLB in 2009 and played 24 games.

Cron has a wealth of coaching experience, including 20 years as a minor league manager in three different organizations, but this is his first MLB assignment. He spent 16 seasons managing in the White Sox system and three more on the Tigers farm, then moved to the D’Backs, where he served as the minor league hitting coordinator for four years until taking over as their Triple-A manager in 2019. His sons C.J. Cron and Kevin Cron have both played in the majors — C.J. is currently on the Rockies, while Kevin played in Japan last year.

To make room for Everidge and Cron on the staff, a few other names shuffled around to new spots. Previous hitting coach Darren Bush moves to 3B coach, and also adds the duty of run prevention coach, which is a new title in Oakland. This is his 10th season on the staff, with the last seven coming as the hitting coach, and his 18th in the organization overall.

Previous assistant hitting coach Eric Martins switches to 1B coach, and also picks up the full role of infield coach, which he shared with Kotsay in 2021. This is his third season on the staff, but his 22nd in the organization overall including time as a minor league player and coach.

The 3B job had been vacant after Kotsay moved up to manager, but the 1B spot had an incumbent who has now been reassigned. Previous 1B coach Mike Aldrete moves to Quality Control Coach, a position once held by Kotsay from 2018-20. This marks Aldrete’s fourth different job on the staff entering his eighth season, after spending time as bench coach (2015), 1B coach (2016-17), assistant hitting coach (2018-19), and 1B coach again (2020-21).

Finally, two more familiar faces return in their usual roles. Scott Emerson begins his sixth season as the pitching coach, after taking over in mid-2017, and it’s his eighth year on the staff overall and his 20th in the organization. Marcus Jensen is back as the bullpen coach for the fifth year, and the Oakland native is also in his eighth season on the staff overall and 16th in the organization.

Analysis

Just as Kotsay is a rookie manager who was hired from within, his debut staff is an interesting mix of old and new.

On one hand, Ausmus and Cron are external additions. Both of them bring managerial experience, with Ausmus doing a couple tours in the majors and Cron working a couple decades in the minors, which seems beneficial alongside a first-year skipper in Kotsay. And the hitting department gets a revamp after a disappointing campaign, with a blend of new perspectives from both in-house (Everidge) and outside the org (Cron).

On the other hand, all that happened without anybody else getting dismissed entirely. Kotsay is entering his seventh year on the staff, and each of Bush, Aldrete, Emerson, and Jensen were already in Oakland when he arrived. Martins and Emerson have been part of the organization for two decades apiece, with Bush and Jensen and Everidge all close behind in that regard, and Bush also has some minor league managing on his resume.

That’s a ton of experience staying on board, but with fresh takes at nearly every spot and a couple veteran names joining the mix. There are a few former managers to help advise Kotsay, and a lot of versatility with several longtime incumbents who have switched around to multiple roles over the years.

Welcome to the 2022 A’s coaching staff!