Phil Nevin is the Giants’ new third base coach, according to a press release from the team, and Jose Alguacil will be the first base coach. Or, if you want to dumb it down, Nevin will be the one responsible for waving in Giants baserunners in 2017, and Alguacil will be the fella with a stopwatch who points to the dugout when a play is close.
Please note that I have no idea if either of them will be good at their new jobs, and neither do you. I wonder if the Giants had Nevin do a computer simulation before considering him. How do you hire someone whose job it is to make a split-second decision that involves piles of scouting reports and situational awareness without seeing him in that position? What an impossible position to fill.
That written, Nevin will be reunited with Bruce Bochy, his manager in San Diego, and he’s been a Triple-A manager for six years (three with the Tigers, three with the Diamondbacks) who was seemingly considered for every open managerial position.
I’m not sure what that means for his ability to keep Buster Posey at third base on a hard-hit ball to the outfield, but I’m willing to give anyone the benefit of the doubt. Remember that I’m one of the goobers who didn’t think Roberto Kelly was that bad.
Alguacil was the manager for the Sacramento River Cats last year, and he has a well-regarded reputation. The promotion was a matter of if, not when, with the only open questions having to do with his role and with which team. From the press release:
The native of Venezuela, often referred to by his nickname of "Agui," spent six seasons (1993-98) as an infielder in the San Francisco Giants farm system and returned to the organization in 2007 to work as a roving instructor. After eight seasons in that capacity, he spent the 2015 season at the helm of the Double-A Richmond Flying Squirrels. 2017 will mark his 11th overall season with the Giants organization.
I’ll be honest: Nevin used to bug me. But so did Bochy. It’s almost as like the Padres in general bug me? Weird, I’ll have to investigate that later.
Hopefully, though, Nevin can wave the runners who should be waved and hold the runners who should be held, while Alguacil can whisper the right things into the ears of would-be base stealers. We’ve seen what happens when that doesn’t work out, and it’s not pretty.