The New York Yankees hired Brad Ausmus as bench coach, a team source confirmed Tuesday. The New York Post first reported the news. Here’s what you need to know:
What the hire means for New York
In Ausmus, the Yankees have a baseball lifer who has both big-league managing and playing experience — two things Mendoza lacked. Ausmus, drafted by the Yankees in the 48th round in 1987, played in 18 MLB seasons for six teams. He managed the Tigers and then he signed a three-year deal to manage the Angels, but only helmed them for the 2019 season before he was dismissed. He was fired from both jobs, compiling a 386-422 (.478) career record before joining the A’s in 2022.
A text message to Ausmus on Tuesday was not immediately returned.
The only other question remaining on the Yankees’ coaching staff is seemingly whether both assistant hitting coaches will return. When the Yankees hired James Rowson to take over the hitting coach job about a week ago, the 47-year-old was non-committal as to whether assistant hitting coaches Brad Wilkerson and Casey Dykes would also be retained or if Rowson would fill the roles with his associates.
Players, however, have spoken highly of Wilkerson and especially Dykes, who, among other duties, mans the batting cage during games. — Brendan Kuty, Yankees staff writer
What Ausmus brings to the Yankees
When Yankees general manager Brian Cashman spoke with reporters last week, he lamented the loss of Mendoza. The bench coach’s job is to be the gatherer of information from all departments and present it in organized ways to manager Aaron Boone, his assistants and the players. Ausmus will be Boone’s right-hand man and help with in-game strategy. It’ll be beneficial to have someone like Ausmus, who is a two-time manager.
Additionally, one of the biggest responsibilities of the bench coach is to run the team’s spring training practices. Ultimately, Ausmus (and the rest of the Yankees coaches) will be judged on how the team performs on the field when the season begins. — Chris Kirschner, Yankees staff writer
(Photo: Raj Mehta / USA Today)