The Toronto Blue Jays made it official earlier today that they have hired former Kansas City Royals hitting coach Kevin Seitzer as their new hitting coach for the 2014 season. This announcement from the Blue Jays has to make one wonder whether Seitzer was hired for his hitting knowledge or for the friendship that he has with current Blue Jays manager John Gibbons.
Gibbons and Seitzer worked together in the Royals organization from 2009-2011 and were both relieved of their duties with the teams in September of 2011 and September of 2012. Why Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos continues to hire people who have clearly failed at their jobs elsewhere is beyond me, but one thing is for sure, the Blue Jays’ dugout will be even more of a disaster in 2014 than it was this past season.
Gibbons didn’t do much for the Blue Jays in 2013, even though they had a revamped roster, chock-full of high-priced talent. He appeared to be sitting down most of the time and lacked solid communication with his players and fellow coaches. Adding someone that he is comfortable with in Seitzer is a move that makes Gibbons happy, and that’s about it.
To be fare to Seitzer, his statistics from when he was a player during his 12-year career are decent, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that his stats will translate into helping the likes of Brett Lawrie and Colby Rasmus regain their solid strokes. He was let go by the Royals in 2012 due in part to the lack of production by Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas. Seitzer himself was a career .295/.375/.404 hitter in the big leagues for four different teams.
This move made by Anthopoulos is one that seems to have been influenced by the wants and needs of Gibbons and not the players that suit up for the Blue Jays day in and day out. Yes, the manager and hitting coach have to have a good and understanding relationship, but not a relationship that has been based on failure, and that is exactly what the Blue Jays will be dealing with during the 2014 MLB season.