It looks like John Russell is the choice as bench coach, according to a few people I’ve contacted in the organization. But he hasn’t signed a contract, so nothing is official at this point.
That would be too simple.
The Sun posted a report on its web site earlier this afternoon that manager Buck Showalter had selected Russell after meeting with him Friday at Camden Yards.
Russell was a late entrant, so it must have been one heck of a meeting.
Assuming that Russell sticks around and doesn’t pull a Juan Samuel - that’s what the kids are calling it these days - the Orioles will need a third base coach who also can work with the infielders.
It appears that Willie Randolph is the frontrunner for that job, but I’m hesitant to make any sort of declaration that could blow up in my face.
What the heck: It appears that Willie Randolph is the frontrunner, according to sources. But everything is subject to change. That’s part of the fun.
Showalter wants someone with experience in the third base box. He’s not looking to break in a newbie. Randolph, who also has managed and served as bench coach, fits the description.
The addition of Russell to the staff would force Gary Allenson, a major league catcher for seven years, to accept the managing job at Triple-A Norfolk or move to another organization.
Also, in case you missed it, Steve Melewski is reporting that Mike Griffin will remain in the organization. Griffin will probably return as Triple-A Norfolk’s pitching coach, but the minor league staffs can’t be completed until the major league staff is finalized.