With the hiring of Alex Cora as their new skipper, the Boston Red Sox coaching staff is in full turnover.
On Thursday, the Cleveland Indians announced the hiring of former Red Sox pitching coach (2015-17) Carl Willis to the same role.
Willis joined the Red Sox in May of the 2015 season to replace the recently fired Juan Nieves. In his first full season as Red Sox pitching coach, the club ranked ninth in ERA. Last season, with the addition of Chris Sale, it shot up to fourth.
Willis, who served as the Indians pitching coach from 2003-09, will replace Mickey Callaway.
Shortly thereafter, the Chicago Cubs reported the hirings of former Red Sox third base coach Brian Butterfield (2013-17) and former Red Sox hitting coach Chili Davis (2015-17) to the same roles.
Butterfield joined John Farrell’s staff in October of 2012 after having served as his third base coach on the Toronto Blue Jays the previous two seasons. Often known for his aggressive base running, the 59-year-old won a ring in his first campaign with the Red Sox. He will take over for Gary Jones amid a major shakeup in Chicago.
Under Davis’ watch, the Red Sox offense hit at a .268 clip and averaged 804 runs per season. In 2016, Boston led the MLB in average (.282), runs (878), OBP (.348), slugging percentage (.461) and OBPS (.810). However last season was a disappointing one for the Red Sox’ bats as the club ranked 26th in slugging percentage at .407 (lowest since 1957) and 27th in home runs with 168 (lowest since 2000).
Davis will replace John Mallee who was let go.
As for the Red Sox staff, look for it to take shape at the conclusion of the World Series.
I’m sure Alex Cora will bring in some top notch coaches for his staff.
I thought Butterfield was a good third base coach.