Cubs go to their past to hire a new hitting coach to replace Chili Davis

The Cubs' season came to an abrupt end after a 13-inning loss to the Rockies in the National League Wild Card Game. They had the best record in the NL less than a week before they were done. Why? Well, the Brewers winning eight straight had a lot to do with it. Being in the wrong division didn't help. Also, though, the Cubs' offense was cooked. It was bad in the second half and I believe -- as detailed here -- Chili Davis' hitting coach approach was a big part of it. 

Apparently that aligned with the Cubs thought process, because the two sides quickly parted ways. Monday, the Cubs announced a new hitting coach: Now former Rangers hitting coach Anthony Iapoce. 

Under Iapoce, the Rangers have ranked fifth in the AL in runs and fourth in home runs. The Cubs could sure get back to hitting for more power after that second half. 

What else we know about Iapoce is that he was with the Cubs organization from 2013-15, working with then hitting coach John Mallee (who was the hitting coach when the Cubs won the World Series in 2016). During his three years with the Cubs, Iapoce oversaw the Cubs' minor-league hitting program. Some of these players were in the minors in that three-year span: Kris Bryant, Willson Contreras, Albert Almora, Kyle Schwarber, Javier Baez and a few others. 

There's a familiarity here and going back to the Mallee area of thought seems like a good thing for lots of young hitters who regressed in 2018. 

CBS Sports Writer

Matt Snyder has been a baseball writer with CBS Sports since 2011. A member of the BBWAA, he's now covered every World Series since 2010. The former Indiana University baseball player now lives on the... Full Bio

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