Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Detroit Tigers officially announced three new additions to manager AJ Hinch’s coaching staff, including the hiring of George Lombard. Detroit additionally filled out the staff with the hires of Scott Coolbaugh as hitting coach and Chip Hale as third base coach.
“We’re thrilled to add these experienced baseball men who bring a diverse range of expertise to our Major League staff,” Tigers executive vice president of baseball operations and general manager Al Avila said.
“Each of them has worked with high-level talent in their careers and have a track record of cultivating winning players. I’d like to commend A.J. and our baseball operations staff for bringing together a group of coaches that I believe will get the most from our players in 2021 and seasons to come.”
Lombard spent the past five seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers as first base coach. His duties also included coaching the outfielders and baserunning. Lombard was among the original members of Dave Roberts’ Dodgers coaching staff.
The Georgia native had previously coached for six seasons with the Boston Red Sox organization (2010-15) and Atlanta Braves (2015). Lombard was a second-round draft pick of the Braves in 1994, and he spent parts of six seasons in the Majors.
The bulk Lombard’s opportunities came with the Tigers in 2002, when he appeared in 72 games — that is exactly half of the games the 45-year-old played in over his career.
Lombard was among the candidates the Tigers interviewed for their managerial vacancy prior to hiring Hinch. Roberts spoke highly of Lombard and predicted it was merely a matter of time until he would receive an opportunity to lead a team.
Last year, the Pittsburgh Pirates reportedly interviewed Lombard as part of their search for a new manager.
Dodgers presumably looking outside organization
When Rick Honeycutt transitioned from pitching coach to a specialized role within the front office, the Dodgers had a seamless transition by promoting Mark Prior. However, they likely will need to look outside the organization for Lombard’s replacement.
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