Today, the Washington Nationals have agreed to terms with Pitching Coach Jim Hickey after the departure of former Pitching Coach Paul Menhart.
“I am very excited to add Jim to our coaching staff and organization as a whole,” said Nationals Manager Dave Martinez. “He brings a wealth of knowledge, experience and passion to the job. He’s led a lot of really good pitching staffs over the years and has been a part of many successful clubs along the way. He’s helped countless pitchers improve, achieve their full potential and become All-Stars. Jim and I worked together in the past and I am really looking forward to working with him again.”
Hickey, who is 59, will be joining the Washington Nationals pitching coach after spending the previous two seasons as a special assistant for player development for the LA Dodgers.
Hickey has appeared as a coach in seven postseasons: (2018, 2013, 2011, 2010, 2008, 2005, 2004).
Hickey, was a former pitcher himself, and appeared in 204 games and had a win-loss record of 39-31 with a 3.54 ERA across seven Major league seasons.
In a Zoom call with reporters Monday afternoon, Hickey said: “I have definitely evolved; it’s become more, as you know, data-driven… But at the end of the day, it’s the same game, and the best pitch in the game is strike one and that kind of thing. I think I’ve got the best of both worlds — a little bit of old-school and a lot of the newer-age stuff as well.”
“The talent. It’s really, really top-heavy when you look at that rotation,” Hickey said. “I know this past season, things didn’t go quite as planned. But when you look at that rotation – and if you can get those guys to being back healthy and back to where they were just a calendar year ago – that’s really, really exciting. I started to do a lot of homework as this was becoming a possibility and digging into some of the numbers. There’s so much there in terms of upside, absolutely, positively. That’s really exciting.”
Additionally, during the Zoom call with Reporters, Hickey discused his relationship with Washington Nationals Manager Dave Martinez: “That is one of the big advantages to having a relationship with somebody,” he said. :In my biased opinion, I think the most important aspect of the game is the management of the bullpen. You have to have that close relationship, and you have to be able to be on the same page and have the same thoughts, even a couple of innings in advance.”