Marlins add Billy Hatcher as first base coach to staff

MIAMI, FL - MARCH 28: (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - MARCH 28: (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /

The Marlins added another former MLB player to their coaching staff this week, the team announces.

The Miami Marlins are once again making moves, this time the organization is adding to its Major League coaching staff.

"According to’s Joe Frisaro, “Billy Hatcher, who has extensive big league coaching and playing experience, will be the new first-base coach, and Eric Duncan is being promoted to hitting coach after being the assistant hitting coach for most of the 2019 season.”"

Hatcher will also be responsible for working with the outfielders. It is part of a new direction manager Don Mattingly is traveling with his staff, hoping it will produce more runs and more wins in 2020.

Hatcher enjoyed a Major League career between 1984-95 and has also been heavily involved in coaching after his playing days were over.

"“Hatcher has been a first- and third-base coach in the big leagues, most recently with the Reds from 2006-18. He also coached on the Rays’ big league staff in 1998-99 and from 2003-05,” Frisaro added."

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The Marlins made changes to their staff at the end of this past season when the team finished 57-105. It started when bench coach Tim Wallach notified the front office he would not return in 2020 to be closer to his family on the west coast.

Duncan has been promoted to hitting coach, but will also work closely with James Rowson, who was brought over from Minnesota to serve as the bench coach but also will work with the entire organization on a hitting plan to help with the team’s run production. Rowson helped the Twins reach the playoffs last season. Minnesota was one of the leaders in home runs hit last season.

"“Duncan became the Marlins’ assistant hitting coach after they dismissed Mike Pagliarulio on April 19. Before that, he was in Miami’s system for the first time as a Minor League hitting coordinator,” Frisaro wrote. “This offseason, Duncan has been working with some of the Marlins’ players at the Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium complex in Jupiter, Fla.”"

The team also lost Fredi Gonzalez this offseason, who did not return to pursue other MLB opportunities.

The Marlins will have Jeff Livesey, Miami’s interim hitting coach, in the organization. He will now serve as the Minor League hitting coordinator. The Marlins have one of the top five minor league systems in all of baseball. Miami made a point to add more bats this past season at all four levels of the farm system after a 2018 run of adding pitching depth at each stop toward South Florida.

Livesy opened 2019 as the club’s assistant hitting coach and was promoted after Pagliarulo was let go. The Marlins as a team hit just 146 home runs last season, last in MLB. Miami was 29th in runs scored and 25th with a .241 batting average.

Mel Stottlemyre Jr was retained as the team’s pitching coach, and Wellington Cepeda will be the new bullpen coach. He and Stottlemyre have worked together in the Diamondbacks organization.

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It was also announced that Rob Flippo is also coming back as the bullpen coordinator.