Jim Reeves "Postcards from the Ledge" today includes a segment on Orel Hershiser's move upstairs, and the resulting coaching staff shuffle:
The Rangers will miss Orel Hershiser's presence in the dugout and before games in the bullpen, where he did most of his work with the team's pitchers. But perhaps not as much as one would think.
While I'm not at all convinced the Rangers' plan to put Hershiser to work on the business -- not baseball -- side of things takes full advantage of his talents, there may not be all that big a drop-off in the pitching coach department.
That's because the Rangers have had veteran pitching coach Mark Connor as their No. 2 man in the bullpen for the past three years. Connor knows the team's pitchers as well as Hershiser does.
There's another aspect to the change that shouldn't be overlooked, either. Dom Chiti will step into Connor's role in the bullpen.
While this takes away a key member of the team's front office developmental staff, Chiti will bring a toughness and bluntness to the clubhouse that should benefit manager Buck Showalter in the long run.
Reeves' take on Chiti seems to dovetail with much of what I've read on him in the past, although given the clubhouse unhappiness that was supposedly rampant last season, one has to wonder whether more "toughness and bluntness" is really all that good a thing...