The Baltimore Orioles are reportedly set to hire former major leaguer Anthony Sanders as their first base coach.
Originally reported by MLB.com’s Jon Morosi as being close to a done deal and since confirmed by Greg Hansen of the Arizona Daily Star, the Baltimore Orioles are set to hire Anthony Sanders to be their new first base coach.
The move has not yet been confirmed by the Orioles, but MLB.com’s Joe Trezza also has a source that confirms the move.
The hiring leaves two open positions on Brandon Hyde’s coaching staff, bullpen coach (held by John Wasdin in 2019) and assistant hitting coach (formerly held by Howie Clark).
A seventh-round pick of the Toronto Blue Jays back in 1992, Sanders’ playing career spanned from 1993-2006 and included stints with the Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds, Colorado Rockies, Seattle Mariners, and multiple rounds with the Blue Jays. He spent his final season of pro ball in Mexico, logging 25 games with two different teams.
Despite the long playing career, Sanders appeared in just 13 games at the major league level, going 6-25 with three doubles and six RBI.
After his playing career, Sanders joined the Colorado Rockies where he would serve in multiple roles, including player development, outfield coordinator, baserunning coordinator, hitting coach, and head coach of the rookie-level Grand Junction Rockies.
Sanders brings with him an impressive resume, including earning Pioneer League Manager of the Year honors in 2014 with the Grand Junction Rockies. He also had a bit of experience with Team USA baseball before joining the coaching staff this year as their first base coach. He won a Gold Medal as a member of the 2000 Olympic team in Sydney, Australia.
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Sanders replaces Arnie Beyeler, who served as the first base coach of the Orioles for just one season. Beyeler had a tough job last season, coaching an outfield that consisted of Stevie Wilkerson and a revolving door of center fielders, along with an out of position Trey Mancini and struggling defenders like Dwight Smith Jr and DJ Stewart.
With a manager and general manager in place, unlike last offseason, and a full offseason to evaluate and hire coaches both on the farm and at the major league level, it’s no surprise that there has been major shakeups up and down the organization.
Not having been a follower of Colorado Rockies minor league baseball or coaching staff, first-hand knowledge of Anthony Sanders and his work has to come from outside reports, all of which speak very highly of the former major leaguer.
Time will tell if this hire will work out, but for now, welcome to Birdland, Anthony Sanders.
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