Greetings from the city of sin, it's your favorite sinner. Anyways, I will be down here covering the winter meetings this week. Me, Vegas? No problem. I am putting together a bigger preview post after finish up my stuff for tomorrow's paper.
But I wanted to get his out to you quickly ... We just got word that Alan Cockrell, who was rumored to be named the Mariners new hitting coach, will indeed take that position.
The Mariners just sent out the release ...
LAS VEGAS, Nev. -- Seattle Mariners Executive Vice President & General Manager of Baseball Operations Jack Zduriencik and Field Manager Don Wakamatsu announced today at the Major League Baseball Winter Meetings that the club has named Alan Cockrell as hitting coach.
"We are very pleased with the group of Major League coaches that Don and our baseball operations staff have put together," Zduriencik said. "Alan shares the key strengths of the other coaches in this group: Great energy, an ability to teach and a passion to help players perform to the best of their abilities."
Today's addition completes the Mariners 2009 coaching staff. In addition to Cockrell, Ty Van Burkleo will be bench coach, Lee Tinsley will be the first base coach, Bruce Hines will be the third base coach, Rick Adair will serve as pitching coach and John Wetteland has been named bullpen coach.
Cockrell, who turned 46 Dec. 5, joins the Mariners after serving the last two seasons as the hitting coach for the Colorado Rockies. He also served as the Rockies hitting coach for the last five months of the 2002 season after Clint Hurdle was promoted to manager on April 29 of that year. Under Cockrell's guidance in 2007, the Rockies finished first in the National League with a .280 team batting average, while the club also led the league in hits and on-base percentage. Prior to becoming the hitting coach in Colorado, he was the hitting coach at Triple-A Colorado Springs for four years from 2003-06, was the Rockies' roving hitting coordinator (2001-02), a minor league manager (1999-2000), and a professional scout (1998).
Cockrell was the ninth overall pick by the San Francisco Giants in the 1984 June draft out of the University of Tennessee. He was a minor league outfielder for 13 seasons, with his only major league action being 9 games for the Rockies in 1996. He spent time in the farm systems of San Francisco, Minnesota, Cleveland and Colorado, and played the 1991 season at Triple-A Calgary in the Mariners Minor League system. An All-American at Tennessee, Cockrell was also the Volunteers' starting quarterback in 1982-83.