After just one season on the job, 58-year-old Bryan Price made the rather shocking decision to retire from full-time coaching after the 2020 season, leaving the Philadelphia Phillies to search for a new pitching coach.
They won’t have to worry about their next pitching coach retiring anytime soon, if things continue to head in the direction that it appears they are.
According to Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia, Cincinnati Reds’ assistant pitching coach and director of pitching Caleb Cotham “has emerged as the clear frontrunner” to be Joe Girardi’s next pitching coach.
If hired, Cotham would be 25 years younger than his predecessor. Heck, the 33-year-old would be more than two decades younger than Girardi. But that’s the direction things are trending across the sports world. Five seasons ago, Cotham pitched in 12 games for Girardi’s New York Yankees. Now, he could be in line to join his coaching staff in a key role.
Interestingly, Salisbury’s report notes that the Phillies also interviewed Rich Dubee for the position. Dubee, of course, was the Phillies pitching coach from 2005-2013, working primarily under Charlie Manuel during that stretch. He last worked as a pitching coach from 2016-2017, on Brad Ausmus’ staff with the Detroit Tigers.
Whoever is the Phillies’ pitching coach in 2021 will be their fifth in as many years. Bob McClure was Pete Mackanin’s pitching coach in 2017, while Gabe Kapler had Rick Kranitz in 2018 and Chris Young in 2019. After Price’s retirement, Girardi hopes to build some continuity with this hire.
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