Cubs tab Loretta as new bench coach

Former Cub Bob Tewksbury announced as mental skills coordinator

January 2nd, 2019

When the Orioles found their new manager in Brandon Hyde last month, the Cubs were once again scrambling to fill a spot on their coaching staff. Joe Maddon's staff in Chicago has seen a high rate of turnover this winter, but more new pieces fell into place Wednesday.

The Cubs announced the hiring of former infielder Mark Loretta as Maddon's new bench coach to replace Hyde, who had been a part of Chicago's staff for the past six seasons. The club also named former pitcher Bob Tewksbury its mental skills coordinator -- a role he previously held for the Giants and Red Sox.

Loretta joins pitching coach Tommy Hottovy, hitting coach Anthony Iapoce and assistant hitting coach Terrmel Sledge as new additions to Maddon's Major League field staff. Those moves come after pitching coach Jim Hickey stepped down for personal reasons, hitting coach Chili Davis (now the Mets' hitting coach) was dismissed and assistant hitting coach Andy Haines landed the main hitting job with the Brewers.

Two other changes to the Cubs' staff this offseason included hiring Chris Denorfia as a quality assurance coach and adding "associate pitching coach" to Mike Borzello's job description. Borzello also serves as the team's catching and strategy coach.

The 47-year-old Loretta, who starred at Northwestern University, joins the Cubs after spending the past nine years in the Padres' front office as a special assistant to baseball operations. Following a 15-year playing career, Loretta retired and joined San Diego's staff in 2010. Over his career -- one that included stints with the Brewers, Astros, Padres, Red Sox and Dodgers -- Loretta hit .295 in 1,726 games and was a two-time All-Star.

Tewksbury, 58, spent 13 years in the Majors between tours with the Yankees, Cubs, Cardinals, Rangers, Padres and Twins. He went 110-102 with a 3.92 ERA in 302 games, made one All-Star team and finished third in National League Cy Young voting in 1992. After retiring in '98, Tewksbury earned a Masters of Education in sports psychology and counseling from Boston University.

Tewksbury served as a mental skills coordinator for the Red Sox from 2004-13 and '15-16, taking a one-year break in '14 to work as a director of player development for the MLB Players Association. Over the past two seasons, Tewksbury was the mental performance coach for the Giants.