BOSTON -- Red Sox manager Alex Cora officially set his 2021 coaching staff on Friday, hiring Will Venable as his new bench coach among other moves.
Former Red Sox captain Jason Varitek was named game planning coordinator, Ramón Vázquez was named quality control coach/interpreter and Kevin Walker was named bullpen coach. Dave Bush (pitching coach), Tim Hyers (hitting coach), Peter Fatse (assistant hitting coach), Tom Goodwin (first-base coach) and Carlos Febles (third-base coach) will resume their roles on the Major League coaching staff.
Venable was the third-base coach for the Cubs in 2020, after serving as the team's first-base coach in 2018 and '19. He was one of nine candidates who interviewed for the Red Sox’s managerial opening, but the club instead opted to rehire Cora.
In Cora’s first stint as Boston’s manager from 2018-19, his bench coach was Ron Roenicke, who served as the team's manager in '20.
Back then, it was vital for Cora -- a rookie skipper -- to have someone next to him on the bench with prior managing experience. That is no longer a necessity with Cora establishing a track record that includes winning a World Series championship in 2018.
The 38-year-old Venable gives the Red Sox a young voice who was a Major League outfielder as recently as 2016. He is known for his strong communication skills with players, something that is always vital in the role of bench coach.
Will’s father, Max -- also an outfielder -- played in the Majors from 1979-91.