The Toronto Blue Jays have held a revolving door as far as the team’s hitting coach role goes, using three different coaches over the last three years. On Monday, they kept that tradition going, naming Brook Jacoby their fourth hitting coach in as many years and third since John Gibbons rejoined the team in 2013.
Brook Jacoby, who spent last season as the Minor League Assistant Hitting Coordinator for the Texas Rangers, will inherit the role that was vacated after one season by Kevin Seitzer. Seitzer, who was under a year-to-year contract, wanted more security and found it when he accepted a lateral move to the Atlanta Braves.
For Jacoby, this will be his second turn as a Major League hitting coach, having held the role previously with the Cincinnati Reds from 2007-2013. During that tenure, the Reds ranked near the middle of the pack in batting average (20th), runs (17th), On-Base Percentage (16th), Slugging (13th), and wRC+ (18th). Needless to say, for a guy that held his role for a seven-year period, you would hope for a slightly better result, especially with a line-up that included Joey Votto.
That said, Jacoby has indicated that his approach seems to be similar to that of Seitzer, in that he prefers to work the middle of the field.
“I always like to look at individuals and how they perform and what strengths and weaknesses they have. I’m big on working the middle of the field, I’m big on situational hitting. Those are some big cards in my deck.”
It was an approach that worked well for Jacoby over the course of his 11-year career. A two-time All-Star, Jacoby was a career .270/.334/.405 hitter with a wRC+ of 103 and a 8.7% career walk rate.