They said they wanted to name their new pitching coach before the end of the month and they kept their word as the Baltimore Orioles announced yesterday that they have named Dave Wallace as the team's new pitching coach.
For those that wanted to see the Birds get an experienced guy, that is exactly what they got as Wallace has been in professional baseball since 1981 and has been a pitching coach for four different Major League teams and most recently was the Atlanta Braves Minor League Pitching Coordinator.
Wallace was the pitching for the Dodgers (1995-97), Mets (1999-2000), Red Sox (2003-06) and Astros (2007) and won a World Series in 2004 with the Red Sox when they made their improbable come back from being down 3-0 in the American League Championship Series to the Yankees and then ended their World Series Championship drought since 1918.
"There's a couple people running this organization that I've respected from afar for a long time," Wallace said in a conference call Tuesday night. "The Orioles history, it's a fantastic baseball town, it's a great place to be, I know their work ethic, and I know what they do and I know the respect they have in the game. When you get a chance to do that on a stage like Baltimore, I don't think you pass it up. It's been one of those things that has been very intriguing to me."
Wallace will need to work with a pitching staff that saw their starting pitchers struggle to get deep into games, and a bullpen that has been overworked the last two seasons. He will also have a major input on who the next bullpen coach will be since the two would be closely working together.
"We would have felt comfortable with any of the guys there at the end, but all things considered, we felt Dave was the best match — not only from a track record standpoint, but where our organization was," Manager Buck Showalter said on the conference call. "It was an important hire for us."
With a good young core of pitchers, the Orioles and all Baltimore fans are hoping that Wallace can help them make the adjustments that help make them not a group of four or five pitchers, but a group of two and three pitchers and perhaps develop the ace this team has long desired.
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