Brocail, Iapoce named to Banister's staff
Pitching coach, hitting coach lauded for 'high energy'
ARLINGTON -- High energy.
That's what the Rangers expect pitching coach Doug Brocail and hitting coach Anthony Iapoce will bring to the club in their new positions, announced on Thursday.
"High energy to me is being ultra-prepared," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. "They show up every day and there is a passion that translates to their players. They show up having something for their guys every day."
Along with Brocail and Iapoce, the Rangers completed their coaching staff by naming Justin Mashore as the assistant hitting coach and Brad Holman as the bullpen coach. Bobby Jones, who was the assistant hitting coach, will be the replay coordinator but continue on-field work with the rest of the coaching staff before the game.
They join bench coach Steve Buechele, third-base coach Tony Beasley, first-base coach Hector Ortiz and field coordinator Jayce Tingler to give Banister a nine-man coaching staff.
"Each one of these coaches has a specific skillset and area of expertise, but they are also well versed in the game of baseball," Banister said. "With a 25-man roster, as well as having a turnover of players, you need not only specific position coaches but coaches who can reach across and help each other, and have the ability to give our players the best chance of succeeding in their development."
Iapoce, Mashore and Holman will be in their first season as a Major League coach. Buechele, Tingler and Ortiz were on a Major League staff for the first time last year. Brocail, Beasley and Jones are the only three with multiple years of big league coaching experience.
"There are always challenges, whether you are a long-term Major League coach or a first-timer," Banister said. "There are challenges every day for coaches. But these guys have all been coaches for a while now. There are a lot of quality coaches in the development system. They are some of the best coaches around, they are just not at the Major League level."
Brocail comes from the Astros, for whom he was the Double-A pitching coach. Brocail was the Astros' pitching coach in 2011-13 before taking on the role of special pitching instructor. That allowed him to work with pitchers at all levels, including the Minor Leagues.
He spent 15 years in the Major Leagues, mainly as a reliever with the Padres, Astros, Tigers and Rangers (2004-05).
"[Brocail] has a lot of experience in the game, on and off the field," Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said. "He has had a lot of success at the Major League level and has a chance to connect with a lot of different pitchers. All the pitchers that he has worked with have tremendous things to say about him. He is a high-energy, positive, big-relationship guy with his players and his co-workers. He is very well-rounded for this job."
Brocail said he will have a simple message for his pitchers.
"From the get-go, any pitcher I've ever had comes to understand that we need to be aggressive and pound the strike zone," Brocail said. "It's a simple form of pitching: pound the strike zone and command the bottom of the strike zone and you have a chance to win the ballgame."