SURPRISE, Ariz. — Doug Henry brings experience to his new role as the Royals bullpen coach: an 11-year career in the big leagues and familiarity with the clubs homegrown reliever corps from three years as the pitching coach at Class AAA Omaha.
By BOB DUTTON
The Kansas City Star
A good fit?
I cant think of a single negative, Henry said. I think Ive had all of those guys except (Aaron) Crow. So theres certainly a familiarity factor.
The Royals announced Henrys promotion on Wednesday, which fills one of two vacancies on the manager Ned Yosts staff. He replaces Steve Foster, who shifted roles on Aug. 31 to become the clubs minor-league pitching coordinator. The club must still find a replacement for hitting coach Kevin Seitzer, who was fired one day after the season ended.
Henry and Class AA Northwest Arkansas pitching coach Larry Carter served as interim bullpen coaches after Foster switched jobs. The two were viewed as finalists for the job and Henrys 582 career appearances, all in relief, might have been a tipping point.
Hes a former big-league pitcher with a ton of experience, Yost said, and (he) has proven to be an excellent pitching coach in the minor leagues. He also has a familiarity with our young pitchers in the system which is a plus.
Henry, 48, pitched for six teams while going 34-42 with a 4.19 ERA in a career that concluded in 2001 with the Royals. He rejoined the organization as a minor-league pitching coach in 2008 after three years on Atlantas minor-league staff.
Doug has worked as a pitching coach or coordinator at nearly every minor-league level, general manager Dayton Moore said, and (he) brings a strong working relationship with a majority of our current major-league relief pitchers.
The Royals are also expected to stay in-house in selecting a replacement for Seitzer.
The top candidates are Northwest Arkansas hitting coach Terry Bradshaw, minor-league hitting coordinator Jack Maloof and Rookie Surprise hitting coach Andre David.
Designated hitter Billy Butler is among the 14 finalists, one from each club, for the Hank Aaron Award in the American League. The award seeks to recognize the most outstanding offensive performer in each league.
Fans can take part in the selection through online balloting through Oct. 16 at http://atmlb.com/R9iebJ. Individuals are permitted to vote as many as 10 times a day. The winners will be announced at the World Series.
To reach Bob Dutton, Royals reporter for The Star, send email to email@example.com. Follow his updates at twitter.com/Royals_Report.