Bengie Molina leaves for Texas
Though they were interested in retaining their coaching staff for next season, the Cardinals have ended up with at least one vacancy to fill. The Rangers announced on Tuesday that they have hired Bengie Molina to serve as first-base coach/catching coordinator. Molina was the Cardinals’ assistant hitting coach in 2013, his first season as a Major League coach.
While working with the Cardinals provided Molina the opportunity to be in the same organization as brother, Yadier, this move to Texas moves him up the coaching ladder and brings him back to an organization for which he played. Molina was a catcher on the Rangers’ 2010 club.
Molina’s departure leaves the Cardinals with an opening on their coaching staff. Because Molina filled what was considered an extra coaching spot, the Cardinals have flexibility in determining how to fill it. They can hire another assistant hitting coach, of course. Other teams use that position to employ an extra pitching coach. The Angels recently took a different route in hiring Rick Eckstein to serve as a facilitator of advanced scouting.
The Cardinals have not made any official announcements about their coaching staff, so it is unknown if anyone else from manager Mike Matheny’s staff is on his way out. Bullpen coach Blaise Ilsley was known to be drawing interest from the Phillies in their pitching coach search. Philadelphia has still not made its hire.
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