Presley on contract: "I fully expect to get it done" (O's hire national crosschecker)

Jim Presley joked that he's been playing phone tag today with executive vice president Dan Duquette, who has made a contract offer to the team's hitting coach.

"I fully expect to get it done," Presley said, taking a break from doing yard work at his Florida home.

"It may be today. I don't know."

Presley hasn't talked to Duquette since last week, and attempts so far today have failed, though not for lack of effort.

"They've been good to me," Presley said, "and I look for it to get done."

Presley just completed his second season with the Orioles and his 10th as a major league hitting coach. He served in the same role with the Florida Marlins for five years before joining the Orioles.

Presley confirmed that the Boston Red Sox have expressed interest in him, saying that he heard about it "indirectly."

The Orioles want to retain Presley and third base coach DeMarlo Hale, which would complete their staff. It's just a matter of finalizing the details and getting signatures as the Thanksgiving holiday approaches.

Also, Presley doesn't expect the Orioles to hire a second hitting coach who would assist with video work and instruction, but not be in uniform for games. It's happening in other organizations, including Atlanta, St. Louis and Philadelphia.

"I've been doing it for years now by myself," he said. "I would rather do the on-field and advance stuff myself. It can spread you pretty thin in spring training, but during the year I want to know what the other staffs are trying to do to our hitters, instead of relying on someone else.

"You can get too many opinions and that can mess guys up. Guys have enough trouble trying to work it out between the hitting coach and themselves."

Note: The Orioles today announced that they hired Matt Haas as National Crosschecker. Haas, 40, spent four years as a Regional Crosschecker for the Miami Marlins. Prior to his time with the Marlins, Haas spent four years as a Midwest Area Scout for the Arizona Diamondbacks and six years as a Midwest Area Scout for the Boston Red Sox.

Haas' brother, Danny, serves as National Scouting Supervisor for the Orioles and their father, Eddie, was an outfielder with the Chicago Cubs (1957) and Milwaukee Braves (1958, 1960) and managed the Atlanta Braves in 1985.

One of Haas' notable signings as an area scout is Kevin Youkilis (eighth round, 2001).

Here's the rest of the press release:

A native of Paducah, Kentucky, Haas played third base and catcher at the University of Notre Dame from 1991-94. He was selected by the Montreal Expos in the 41st round of the 1994 draft and played in their minor league system through 1997, advancing as far as Double-A Harrisburg before beginning his scouting career.

Haas resides in Cincinnati with his wife, Colleen, and their three children; Jackson (12), Alexandra (10) and Kelsea (6).

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