It’s crazy to think that New York Yankees executive Brian Cashman still hasn’t done certain things since he took over as the team’s general manager and senior vice president in 1998, but he completed a first on Sunday.
Cashman made the first midseason trade of his tenure with the Yankees. The team announced that it had relieved hitting coach Dillon Lawson of his duties following the team’s loss to the Chicago Cubs.
«It is well documented that I have been reluctant in the past to make changes to our coaching staff in the middle of a season,» Cashman said in a statement. «I am a great believer that successes and failures are collective efforts. However, I ultimately felt a change was needed and that a new voice overseeing our hitting operations would give us the best chance to perform closer to our abilities at as we move into the second half of our season.
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«I want to (a) thank Dillon for all his efforts. He has a brilliant baseball mind that will continue to lead to a long and fruitful baseball career.»
Lawson was named the hitting coach before the start of the 2022 season. That year, Aaron Judge hit 62 home runs in a dazzling season and set the new American League record for home runs.
However, New York’s .231 batting average ranks 28th in the majors behind only the Detroit Tigers and Oakland A’s. The Tigers and A’s are both under .500 while the Yankees compete for second and third place in the AL East.
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The Yankees are fifth in the majors with 129 home runs, but 18 in runs scored and 26 in on-base percentage.
Casey Dykes and Brad Wilkerson will be trained, Cashman said. There was no immediate announcement of a replacement for Lawson. It was expected that someone from outside the organization would be hired for the position.
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Cashman had never before fired a coach in the middle of a season. The last time there was a midseason change in the Yankees’ coaching staff was when Nardi Contreras replaced Billy Connors in July 1995 as pitching coach on Buck Showalter’s coaching staff.
Associated Press contributed to this report.