The Orioles will crank up the interview process for finding a new pitching coach today by bringing in Rich Dubee, who spent the past nine seasons on the job with the Phillies.
Dubee, who turned 56 on Saturday, already has a few points in his favor. He worked in the Expos farm system while executive vice president Dan Duquette was in the front office. He's a native of Brockton, Mass., not far from Duquette's hometown. He lives in Sarasota, where the Orioles hold spring training.
The job would most certainly appeal to Dubee if he ends up with multiple suitors.
Dubee's resume is impressive. He's regarded as a "high-profile" candidate within the Orioles organization.
He has no ties to manager Buck Showalter, whose vote figures to carry the most weight. It's hardly a deal-breaker, but it's worth noting.
"He did a great job there," said former Orioles manager Sam Perlozzo, who served as the Phillies' third and first base coaches before being dismissed after the 2012 season. "Charlie (Manuel) pretty much let him do his job. He's very prepared. He puts in a ton of time. He gets there early and watches film. He's prepared, and he prepares his pitchers for the games."
Dubee draws praise for having worked with the likes of Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Cole Hamels and Roy Oswalt. Others aren't impressed, figuring that anyone could look like a coaching genius with those arms on the staff.
"That's not always a good thing," Perlozzo said. "Sometimes it's harder to keep veteran guys like that on course. The fact that you did keep them on course means you didn't screw anybody up. That's doing a good job. I know it's a heck of way to say it, but they came in talented and they left talented at the end of the season. He did a good job with them."
Perlozzo suggested that I go back and look at the pitching staff in 2008, the year that the Phillies won the World Series. Hamels started Game 1, Brett Myers Game 2, Jamie Moyer Game 3, Joe Blanton Game 4 and Hamels the Game 5 clincher.
Not a lot of Cy Young Awards among that foursome.
Moyer won 16 games at age 45. Blanton went 34-25 with a 4.47 ERA in parts of five seasons with the Phillies. He was 2-14 with a 6.04 ERA with the Angels this season.
Adam Eaton made 19 starts with the Phillies in 2008.
Just saying ...
Left-hander J.A. Happ is 40-42 with a 4.25 ERA in seven major league seasons. He went 12-4 with a 2.93 ERA and two shutouts in 2009.
Before joining the Phillies organization, Dubee served as the Marlins' minor league pitching coordinator from 1995-97 and as their pitching coach from 1998-2001, working with the likes of Livan Hernandez, A.J. Burnett, Ryan Dempster, Brad Penny, Josh Beckett and Alex Fernandez.
As previously reported, the Orioles also have Carl Willis (Mariners), Andy Hawkins (Rangers) and Dave Wallace (Braves) on their list of outside candidates. Hawkins has only been a pitching coach on an interim basis before moving to bullpen coach, but the Orioles definitely like him.
The Orioles had to receive permission to interview Willis, Hawkins and Wallace, but it was never in doubt. The Mariners are changing managers and told Willis he could seek another job. Hawkins is a bullpen coach and Wallace is a minor league pitching coordinator. Their teams weren't going to deny them a chance at a promotion.
Going back to Perlozzo, he's still trying to hook on with another team. He's viewed within the industry as a top-notch infield and baserunning instructor. He's also one of the better third base coaches, though the Phillies shifted him across the diamond to make room for another former Orioles coach/manager, Juan Samuel.