The New York Yankees announced Monday that they had hired former New York Mets manager Luis Rojas as their new third-base coach. A recent report from the New York Post indicated that there was a "strong likelihood" that the Yankees would hire Rojas to that role. The report said there was great mutual admiration between Rojas and Yankees manager Aaron Boone during the interview process.
Rojas, the son of Felipe Alou, was the Mets manager the past two seasons. The 40-year-old replaced Carlos Beltran, who never managed a game for the Mets and was dismissed in January 2020 in the aftermath of the Astros sign-stealing scandal due to his reportedly heavy involvement. Rojas went 26-34 in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season and then 77-85 last year. In a vacuum, that might not have been a fireable record, but the Mets had a 4 1/2-game lead in the NL East in late July and ended up 11 1/2 games out. They went 22-39 in that stretch. They also had some clubhouse issues that bled out into the public eye.
Just because Rojas getting fired was probably the right move, that doesn't mean he shouldn't get a job like this. He's a well-respected baseball man from a famed baseball family. He's won championships as a manager in both the minors and in the Dominican Republic.
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Perhaps stepping into the Yankees' third-base coaching role is what gets him back on track as an up-and-comer. We just witnessed what a rock star Ron Washington became in Atlanta with his third-base coaching exploits during their World Series run.
The Yankees' third-base coach last season was Phil Nevin, and he had to defend decisions several times throughout the regular season and in the Wild Card Game. He was since let go by the Yankees.
Last season, the Yankees made 50 outs on the bases, which was the eighth-most in all of baseball. The big number, though, would be the 22 outs they made at home. That was tied for the most with the Royals. They were also one of the worst teams in baseball at taking the extra base.
Simply, they need a base-running overhaul. Maybe Rojas taking over for Nevin at third will be part of that equation.