By Sam Bush
So, will the World Series champ Nats miss Joe Dillon, their assistant hitting coach who got the top hitting job with the Phillies?
The 44-year-old joined the Nationals’ big league staff in 2018 as Kevin Long’s assistant and quickly won the support of players who appreciated his hands-on coaching. Juan Soto, in particular, raved about the one-on-one work he did with Dillon since making his major league debut last season.
Dillon, who served as the Nationals’ Triple-A hitting coach in 2014-15, rejoined the organization after two seasons as the Marlins’ minor league hitting coordinator.
Dillon is expected to be the only member of the Nationals coaching staff that doesn’t return in 2020. Manager Davey Martinez enters the third and final guaranteed year of his contract, with the club holding a 2021 option on him. Paul Menhart, who replaced Derek Lilliquist as pitching coach in late April, is expected to get the job on a full-time basis.
Bench coach Chip Hale, first base coach Tim Bogar (who was a candidate for the Mets’ managerial opening), third base coach Bob Henley, bullpen coach Henry Blanco and Long all are set to return for their third season on Martinez’s staff.