Boston Red Sox promote new bench and bullpen coaches


In the wake of John Farrell‘s sudden departure due to his battle with lymphoma we learned that bench coach Torey Lovullo would be take over as the interim manager of the Boston Red Sox, but his temporary promotion has had a domino effect on the rest of the organization.

The Red Sox announced Sunday morning that longtime bullpen coach Dana LeVangie will fill Lovullo’s vacated bench coach role for the rest of the season. The team will also bring Pawtucket pitching coach Bob Kipper up from Triple-A to take over the bullpen coach spot. Lovullo stated that both of these changes will take effect starting Monday.

"“A lot of moving parts there,” said Lovullo. “We wanted to stay internal. We know that these two guys know baseball on a really good level, especially from within our system, and I think the fit is going to be really special.”"

Lovullo is well aware of the importance of a good bench coach, having served in that role under Farrell. It’s a role that may often go overlooked, but Lovullo was quick to point out how he can benefit from having LeVangie as his right-hand man in the dugout.

"“There’s a lot happening in the dugout,” explained Lovullo. “I know it’s hard for people to understand what’s going on. From my point of view, there’s three or four different areas that I’ve got to run into, to have that bench coach there to challenge some of my thoughts, to endorse some of my thoughts is going to be nice to have, especially given Dana’s background. There’s immediate trust. There’s a guy that’s respected in this game and being able to bounce off some thoughts, it’s going to be invaluable for me.”"

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Lovullo has been thrust into a new role without any opportunity to prepare for it. As he gets his first taste of being a big league manager, Lovullo will need to rely on his coaches that much more as he adjusts to his new responsibilities. Having a couple of those coaches moving into new roles as well could lead to some short-term disorganization, but the Red Sox are confident that they have the right people in place to step in and succeed.

There is another benefit to having LeVangie move from the bullpen to the dugout. As the team’s catching instructor, LeVangie has had the opportunity to work with Blake Swihart. Lovullo explained that LeVangie’s new role as bench coach will get him closer to the action and allow for more interaction with the rookie catcher between innings, which is something Lovullo sees a lot of value with in regards to Swihart’s development behind the plate.

The Red Sox still need to figure out who is going to fill in for Kipper as Pawtucket’s pitching coach. With so many moving pieces among the coaching staff, the ripple effects will be felt throughout the organization. It may not be ideal, but the Red Sox are making the most of a difficult situation and trusting in their staff to step up to the challenge.

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