Saturday, January 22, 2022

Mets Coaching Staff


 

FLUSHING, N.Y., January 21, 2022 — The New York Mets today announced their 2022 major league coaching staff. Glenn Sherlock will join the staff as Manager Buck Showalter’s bench coach, Eric Chavez will serve as hitting coach, Wayne Kirby as first base coach and outfield/baserunning instructor and Joey Cora will serve as third base coach and infield instructor. Craig Bjornson joins the staff as the bullpen coach, while Jeremy Barnes has been promoted from Director of Player Initiatives to assistant hitting coach. Pitching coach Jeremy Hefner will return for his third season with the team.

Glenn Sherlock, 61, returns to the Mets coaching staff for the second time in his career. Sherlock served as the team’s third base coach (2017–2018) and first base coach (2019) as well as the club’s catching instructor (2017–2019). Sherlock spent the previous two seasons on the Pirates coaching staff as their game-planning coach and catching instructor. Sherlock’s major league coaching experience began with the New York Yankees where he served as the team’s catching coach under Showalter (1992, 1994–1995). In 1996, Sherlock reunited with Showalter with the expansion Arizona Diamondbacks and was the team’s catching coach from their inaugural season in 1998 until the end of the 2016 season. Sherlock also served as the Diamondbacks bench coach (2003, 2015–2016), third base coach (2004 & 2014), and bullpen coach (1998–2002, 2005–2013) during his 21-year tenure in Arizona. In addition to his Major League coaching experience, Sherlock spent three years as a manager in the Yankees farm system (1990–1991, 1993) and was the D-backs’ minor league catching coordinator from 1996–1997.

Jeremy Hefner, 35, will return for his third season as the Mets pitching coach. Last season, the Mets ranked ninth in the majors with a 3.90 ERA. Previously, Hefner worked in the Twins organization as an advance scout (2017–2018) and served as the team’s assistant pitching coach in 2019. Hefner pitched in two major league seasons (2012–2013) with the Mets and posted a 4.65 career ERA in 50 games (36 starts).

Craig Bjornson, 52, was Boston’s bullpen coach from 2018–2020. Bjornson played an integral part in Boston’s World Series victory in 2018 as Red Sox relief pitchers posted 1.40 ERA (four earned runs/25.2 innings) in the Fall Classic, the fourth lowest bullpen ERA in World Series history (minimum 20.0 IP). In 2019, Red Sox relievers led the majors with a 10.5 SO/9.0 IP. Prior to his three-year stint in Boston, Bjornson served as Houston’s bullpen coach for five seasons (2012, 2014–2017), winning a World Series in 2017. From 2014–2017, Astros relievers led the majors with a 3.17 SO/BB and ranked second with a 9.62 SO/9.0 IP. Bjornson spent 13 years (1999–2011) as a minor league pitching coach in the Montreal/Washington, Kansas City, Los Angeles-NL and Colorado organizations.

Eric Chavez, 44, played 17 major league seasons with Oakland (1998–2010), New York-AL (2011–2012) and Arizona (2013–2014). He won six consecutive American League Gold Glove Awards (2001–2006) at third base with the Athletics. His six Gold Gloves are tied for the fifth-most all-time by a third baseman. He slashed .268/.342/.475 with 816 runs, 318 doubles, 260 homers and 902 RBI in 1,615 major league games. Chavez earned the AL Silver Slugger Award in 2002 when he smashed a career-high 34 homers. From 2016–2018, Chavez worked in the Angels front office as a special assistant to General Manager Billy Eppler. He also served under Eppler and Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman as a special assignment scout for New York-AL in 2015.

Jeremy Barnes, 34, served as the Director of Player Initiatives for the Mets in 2021. From 2019–2020, Barnes was Houston’s minor league hitting coordinator and from 2017–2018, he was the hitting coach with Tri-City, the Astros New York-Penn League affiliate. He played professionally from 2009–2015, reaching the Triple-A level. Following his playing career, Barnes spent two seasons working for ACT Baseball in Canberra, Australia, as manager of player pathway and coaching development.

Joey Cora, 57, has spent the past five seasons as the third base coach and infield coach for the Pittsburgh Pirates (2017–2021). In 2012, he was the bench coach in Miami under Ozzie GuillĂ©n. Cora spent eight seasons as a member of the Chicago White Sox coaching staff where he was the third base coach (2004–2006) and bench coach (2007–2011), winning a World Series title in 2005. He managed the Mets rookie-level Appalachian League Kingsport affiliate in 2001–2002 and managed Washington’s South Atlantic League minor league team in 2003. Cora began his coaching career in 2000 with Daytona in the Florida State League. Cora owned a career batting average of .277 in 1,119 career games with San Diego (1987, 1989–1990), Chicago-AL (1991–1994), Seattle (1995–1998), and Cleveland (1998). In 1997, he was selected to the American League All-Star team. His younger brother, Alex, manages the Boston Red Sox. A native of Caguas, Puerto Rico, Cora served as the General Manager for Caguas of the Puerto Rican Winter League for three seasons (1999–2001), winning the championship in 2001.

Wayne Kirby, 57, previously served as the Orioles’ first base coach under Showalter from 2011–2018. Most recently, Kirby served in the same role with the Padres from 2020–2021. Kirby served as the Texas Rangers minor league outfield and baserunning coordinator from 2006–2010. He spent four years as a hitting coach in the minors, all with Cleveland’s farm system from 2002–2005. Kirby appeared in 516 games as an outfielder during parts of an eight-year Major League career with Cleveland (1991–1996), the Dodgers (1996–1997) and the Mets (1998). With the Mets, Kirby appeared in 26 games and scored five runs. Kirby led AL outfielders with 19 assists in 1993.


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