Lance McAlister

Lance McAlister

Lance McAlister covers everything in Cincinnati sports! Host of sports talk on Cincinnati News Radio 700WLW and ESPN 1530!Full Bio


Reds and MLB hitting coaches

Photo: Getty Images

With all the talk about the Reds hitting woes and hitting coach Joel McKeithan, I figured I’d offer a perspective on MLB hitting coaches. Hitting today is understanding and being able to articulate/translate analytics, swing analysis, video breakdowns, launch angle, bat speed, exit velocity, pitch selection/execution. It has little to do with previous MLB experience.

MLB batting coaches for Top 10 offensive teams MLB (OPS)

1. Yankees: James Rowson. Highest level of experience Class A. Hit .193 in 128 minor league games. Spent 1998 with the Cook County Cheetahs of the independent Heartland League.

2. Dodgers: Robert Van Scoyoc. Never played minor league baseball. Played college baseball at Cuesta College. Began his coaching career working with youth hitters in the Santa Clarita Valley and as a part-time assistant coach for Valencia High School.

3. Brewers: Connor Dawson. Never played minor league baseball. Played at Neosho County Community College.

4. Orioles: Matt Borgschulte. Never played minor league baseball. Played at Western Kentucky University and Drury University. Volunteer assistant coach. Joined the Southeast Missouri State University staff. Summer coach of the Wisconsin Woodchucks of the Northwoods League. Coached Tusculum College Pioneers.

5. Phillies: Kevin Long. Zero MLB at-bats. Hit .234 over three Triple-A seasons.

6. Astros: Alex Cintron, former ML player, .275 in 680 ML games.

7. Braves: Kevin Seitzer, .295 over 12 ML seasons

8. Royals: Alec Zumwalt, former pitcher, appeared in 303 minor league games.

9. Padres: Vic Rodriguez, 28 ML plate appearances

10. Red Sox: Peter Faste, Highest playing level A-Ball. Last played for Florence Freedom. Founded his own baseball academy.

Other hitting coaches/former MLB players

Rays: Chad Mottola, .200 in 59 ML games

Guardians: Chris Valaika, former Red. 238 in 99 ML games

Rockies: Hensley Meulens, .220 in 182 ML games

White Sox: Marcus Thames

Diamondbacks: Joe Mather

Nationals: Darnell Coles

McKeithan played for Vanderbilt. In the summer of 2013, he played for the Newports Gulls in the New England Collegiate Baseball League.  He transferred to North Carolina State, where he finished his playing career. In 2019, McKeithan served as a minor league hitting coach for the Williamsports Crosscutters in the Phillies organization. He was the minor league hitting coordinator for the Tigers for the 2021 season. After the 2021 season, the Reds hired him to be their major league coaching staff as their assistant hitting coach. On November 29, 2022, the Reds promoted McKeithan to be their primary hitting coach for the 2023 season.

Here is a complete list of hitting coaches in MLB HERE

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