In addition to losing Chris Woodward, Tim Hyers and front office personnel, the Los Angeles Dodgers saw former bullpen coach Josh Bard accept a position under New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone after the 2017 season.
But after two seasons as Yankees bench coach, Bard was relieved of his duties to pursue other opportunities. Bard is among the changes the Yankees are making to their coaching staff after falling to the Houston Astros in the American League Championship Series.
Though in Bard’s case, it stems from a desire to find a role closer to his home in Colorado. While the Dodgers have yet to formally announce Mark Prior as the successor to pitching coach Rick Honeycutt, the move will leave a void at bullpen coach.
According to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, Bard is a candidate to rejoin the organization in that capacity:
— Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) November 12, 2019
Prior to joining the Yankees, Bard spent five seasons with the Dodgers organization. He worked as a special assistant to the front office in 2013, a professional scout in 2014 and 2015, then as the bullpen coach for the Major League team in 2016 and 2017.
Bard’s career also includes serving as bench coach for New Zealand’s World Baseball Classic qualifier team in February 2016.
He was well-regarded within the Dodgers organization and supported that sentiment with on-field results. In 2016, Dodgers relief pitchers led the Majors with 590.2 innings pitched, 633 strikeouts and 607 appearances. They additionally ranked second overall in ERA (3.35), WHIP (1.16) and opponents’ batting average (.221).
In 2017, the group set a National League record with 637 strikeouts, and led all NL bullpens in ERA (3.38), opponents’ batting average (.222) and strikeouts per nine innings (10.24).
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