According to a report by C. Trent Rosecrans, Bryan Price’s coaching staff is filling out.
Don Long (51) has been hired as the team’s new hitting coach, replacing Brook Jacoby. Long has been the Braves’ minor league hitting coordinator since 2011 and previously was the Pirates’ hitting coach from 2008-10. Prior to working for Pittsburgh, Long worked for eight years as minor league hitting coordinator for the Phillies organization. Long managed 11 seasons in the Angels minor league system before that. Here’s a story in a local Washington state paper that offers an introduction to Long’s approach to coaching hitting.
Update: Here’s an interview with Don Long in 2010 by at Baseball Prospectus.
Jeff Pico (47) has been hired as the team’s new pitching coach, replacing Price in that role. Pico has spent the last eleven years in the Arizona Diamondbacks organization. He was the D-Backs’ minor league field coordinator the last two years and was minor league pitching coordinator in 2010-11. Despite throwing a complete game shutout in his debut (against the Reds), Pico had a relatively brief major league career (1988-90) for the Cubs.
This appears to be Pico’s first major league coaching job. So he must have created a favorable impression on Price when they worked together for the Diamondbacks.
Long and Pico will join Jay Bell, who will serve as the Reds’ bench coach, as newcomers on the staff. Price has already indicated that Mack Jenkins, who served as assistant pitching coach the last two seasons, would remain on his staff.
Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky’s Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve’s thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.