Giants hire new coach, keep old ones

Now that the manager's position has been filled, and a few days remain before free agent signing can begin, the Giants took to the case of filling out the rest of the coaching staff. To that end, Bochy has brought another longtime Padre into the fold at third base, but the Giants will also return most of the coaching staff back as the team reloads.

Bruce Bochy is coming to the Giants, and he’s bringing a friend.

The San Francisco Giants have hired Tim Flannery as the new third base coach, replacing Gene Glynn.  Flannery has spent all 23 years of his baseball career as a player, minor league manager and coach (including 7 years as Bochy’s third base coach) with the Padres, spending the last three as a broadcaster.

After the hiring of Flannery, the Giants indicated that most of the coaching staff would be returning.  Pitching coach Dave Righetti announced that he will return to the Giants for his 8th season in the role.  The Giants will keep bullpen coach Mark Gardner and bullpen catcher Bill Hayes together to keep Righetti’s team in place to work with the young pitchers.  The Giants will also retain hitting coach Joe Lefebvre, and are considering moving hitting coordinator Willie Upshaw to be the first base coach, as Luis Pujols is unlikely to return.  Ron Wotus would also return as bench coach if he is not given a chance to manage elsewhere.

Flannery was a popular player with the Padres, and like Bochy, was part of the 1984 team that went to the World Series.  Flannery hit a famous ground ball that Chicago Cubs first baseman Leon Durham wasn’t able to handle that led the Padres to the NLCS win in Game 5 of their series.

Flannery was third base coach for the Padres under Bochy from 1997 until 2002, and was also a part of the 1998 World Series team.  The last three years, he has worked in the broadcast booth for the Padres, working alongside Jerry Coleman, a hall-of-famer and popular Padres broadcaster.

Flannery has many off-the-field pursuits, including singing and songwriting.  He has released 6 CDs and recorded with many of music’s big names, including Jimmy Buffett, Linda Ronstadt and Willie Nelson.

There’s no word on whether or not he’ll record with shortstop Omar Vizquel, another music enthusiast on the Giants.

Righetti was unsure if he would return to the team, expressing some reservations about working for a manager who had inherited him.  But he’d done it once before in 2003, when Felipe Alou replaced Dusty Baker, and after talking with Bochy, he decided to stay. 

In addition to coaching staff moves, the Giants have announced the hiring of scout John Cox.  Cox has been a high profile scout working the Pacific Rim with the New York Yankees for the past decade, and was a big part of the Yankees signing Japanese outfielder Hideki Matsui and Taiwanese pitcher Chien-Ming Wang.  He is currently in Japan with Giants director of international operations, Rick Ragazzo.  They are following Bochy’s exhibition series managing a team of MLB all-stars playing a team of Japanese all-stars.  It’s indicated they are interested in Japanese players who may come to the States this year, although the Giants are unlikely to get involved in the competition for pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka, who is likely to get a very large contract.

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