Though the Orioles are excluded from the World Series again this fall, they had a busy day interviewing candidates for the vacant job of pitching coach.
According to industry sources, the Orioles met today with Carl Willis, Andy Hawkins and Dave Wallace. Willis started the procession with an interview at 10 a.m.
Rich Dubee met yesterday with team officials. Those are the four known outside candidates.
No word on whether the Orioles are planning any more interviews, but they’re expected to meet with some in-house candidates.
Willis has one year left on his contract with the Mariners, but he’s been given permission to seek another job while Seattle searches for a new manager.
Willis served as Indians pitching coach from 2003-09. He was named the Mariners’ minor league pitching coordinator in November 2009, and he replaced Rick Adair as pitching coach on Aug. 9, 2010.
The Orioles will consider having Willis again replace Adair, who took a personal leave of absence on Aug. 15 and won’t return in 2014.
Hawkins currently serves as the Rangers’ bullpen coach after being named interim pitching coach in 2008 after Mark Connor was fired. Adair replaced Connor as Orioles pitching coach in 2011.
Wallace is the Braves’ minor league pitching coordinator. He’s served as pitching coach for the Dodgers, Mets, Red Sox and Astros, and also filled in for the Braves in 2011 while Roger McDowell was on suspension.
Wallace won a World Series ring with the Red Sox in 2004.
The Orioles could meet with Bill Castro, who began the season as the Orioles’ bullpen coach before replacing Adair, and Triple-A Norfolk pitching coach Mike Griffin. Other possibilities include Scott McGregor, who filled in for Castro, and director of pitching development Rick Peterson.
The new pitching coach will have input in the hiring of a bullpen coach.
Update: Now I’m hearing that the Orioles are done interviewing candidates. They will decide between Dubee, Willis, Hawkins and Wallace.
They really can’t go wrong here. All four candidates bring a lot to the table and apparently made favorable impressions on the Orioles.