After falling just short of winning the World Series for the second straight season, the Los Angeles Dodgers lost a number of staff members at the beginning of this offseason.
One of them was hitting coach Turner Ward, who took the same position with the Cincinnati Reds so he can be closer to his ailing wife and family in Alabama. The Dodgers also lost third base and infield coach Chris Woodward as he’s now manager of the Texas Rangers.
Los Angeles has not yet found replacements for their coaching staff or font office, though Dino Ebel, formerly of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, is expected to be hired as third base coach.
It appears the Dodgers have found a replacement for Ward as well as according to Pedro Moura of The Athletic, they are set to hire Robert Van Scoyoc:
The Dodgers plan to hire Diamondbacks hitting strategist Robert Van Scoyoc as their new hitting coach, according to sources who requested anonymity because the move has not yet been finalized.
Van Scoyoc is known for working with a number a Major League hitters to revamp their swing, including Boston Red Sox designated hitter J.D. Martinez and Dodgers utility man Chris Taylor. Both players went from being on the fringe of the Minor and Major Leagues to All-Star caliber talents due to their swing changes that including trying to hit the ball in the air more.
Van Scoyoc and another coach, Craig Wallenbrock, worked out of a business park in Santa Clarita, Calif., with professional hitters for years before he was hired by the Arizona Diamondbacks prior to the 2018 season. His official title was hitting strategist, which is a position that they created for him.
The Dodgers still have a couple coaches to replace. Assistant hitting coach Luis Ortiz left to become Woodward’s hitting coach with the Rangers and game planning and communications coach Danny Lehmann is also no longer with the organization.