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Yankees hire Matt Blake as pitching coach, source says

Yankees GM Brian Cashman speaks at post-season news

Yankees GM Brian Cashman speaks at post-season news conference following the club's elimination from the 2019 postseason. Credit: Howard Simmons

The Yankees have their replacement for Larry Rothschild.

And on the surface, their new pitching coach couldn’t be much more different from the man he’s replacing.

A source confirmed Thursday night that Matt Blake has been hired to replace Rothschild, 65, fired Oct. 28 after nine seasons as the Yankees' pitching coach.  

Blake, 33, an area scout for the Yankees in 2010, just finished his fourth season with the Indians, whom he served in a variety of roles, most recently as their assistant director of player development. On Tuesday, the Indians announced they had promoted Blake, who graduated from Holy Cross with a degree in psychology and philosophy, to their director of pitching development.

In a Tuesday story reporting the promotion, Cleveland.com’s Joe Noga wrote that Blake was “among those singled out by manager Terry Francona for their efforts in preparing young pitchers such as Zach Plesac, Jefry Rodriguez and Aaron Civale.” They made significant contributions to the Indians after being brought up to the majors because of a series of injuries to the big-league staff.

Blake joined the Indians in 2016 as its lower-level pitching coordinator. In November 2016, he was promoted to assistant director of player development, a position he held for three years before Tuesday’s promotion.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman in June indirectly hinted at changes coming in certain departments in the organization, including the development of pitchers, when he announced the hiring of Driveline’s Sam Briend to be the team’s director of pitching development, a just-created position with a heavy emphasis on data and science.

“There’s an explosion of technology and data and analytics in our entire sport clearly that we’re on top of,” Cashman said then. “But what we’re not on top of, we’re going to close the gap on.”

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