Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Jewett and Meulens out

This is some interesting stuff. In Paul Meyer's gamethread on the PBC last night, he casually mentioned this:

The Pirates don't plan to announce this, but manager Trent Jewett and hitting instructor Hensley Meulens won't return to Class AAA Indianapolis next season.
Both Meulens and Jewett are pretty highly regarded and I think a lot of people thought Jewett was the most likely successor to Jim Tracy last winter. I wonder if their leaving has anything to do with something Dejan mentioned in his minor league season review yesterday:

Most of the ruffling, by many accounts, was done by Troy Buckley, the roving pitching coordinator hired by Stark.

Buckley wielded an autocratic hand beginning with spring training, to the extent that pitching coaches of the lower-level affiliates were told when they could or could not address their pitchers. Experienced pitching coaches Bob Milacki and Wilson Alvarez soon resigned from Lynchburg and State College and were replaced by Mike Steele, a 29-year-old who had been Michigan State University's pitching coach two years, and Brian Tracy, the 24-year-old son of Jim Tracy who had just retired from playing.
Now, neither Jewett nor Meulens is a pitching coach, but it seems to me that two guys that have been in the organization and baseball in general as long as they have might be pretty opposed to a front office that wields an "autocratic hand." This is, of course, idle speculation, but it does seem strange to lose so many minor league coaches in one year.