The Yankees have found their bench coach under Aaron Boone, announcing that they hired former catcher and big-league manager Brad Ausmus for the position.
The 54-year-old most recently spent the 2022 season as the bench coach of the Oakland Athletics, but his most prominent role in his post-playing days was as manager.
He led the Detroit Tigers from 2014-2017, posting a 314-332 record that included a postseason appearance in his debut season.
In 2018, he joined the Los Angeles Angels as a special assistant to general manager Billy Eppler, who went on to take the GM role of the Mets from 2022-2023. The following year, he was named manager of the club but only lasted one season when he went 70-92.
A three-time Gold Glove Award winner as a player, Ausmus spent 18 years in the majors as a player where he garnered an All-Star appearance with the Tigers in 1999.
The Yankees are looking for some semblance of stability in their coaching staff. They lost Boone’s bench coach of the last four years, Carlos Mendoza, when he took the managerial job across town with the Mets.
New York had already addressed its hitting-coach position, which is now on its third person in the last four months. They fired Dillon Lawson in July while the offense sagged well below expectations — especially with Aaron Judge sidelined at the time by a toe injury. It was the first in-season firing ever made by Brian Cashman, who has been with the club for 26 seasons.
Former player and MLB Network talent Sean Casey stepped in on an interim basis, but couldn’t do much to rectify the Bronx Bombers’ misfiring offense. After ranking second in Major League Baseball in runs per game in 2022, the Yankees averaged 4.15 runs per game in 2023, which ranked sixth-worst in all of baseball.
The postseason-less campaign further exposed the franchise’s precariously dangerous offensive model of relying on Judge, which they used to make the ALCS in 2022. It means Cashman will likely be busy as the team has already been linked to the likes of slugging outfielders Juan Soto and Cody Bellinger this winter.
But they’ll also need to address a thin starting rotation behind AL Cy Young Award winner Gerrit Cole. Carlos Rodon struggled mightily in his debut season in the Bronx while Nestor Cortes regressed significantly.
More struggles to start 2024 could provide an avenue for Ausmus to regain a managerial role in the majors. Boone has continuously evaded Cashman and Hal Steinbrenner’s axe despite the Yankees’ underperforming.