Dave Hudgens 1 (Baron)

Hitting coach Dave Hudgens fired, replaced by Lamar Johnson

Hitting coach Dave Hudgens was fired on Monday. He’s been replaced with minor league hitting coordinator Lamar Johnson…



May 27, 9:10 am: According to Hudgens, his hitters have been trying too hard, especially at Citi Field, where fans have been very critical.

“I think the fans are really tough on the guys at home,” he explained (MLB.com, May 27). “It’s tougher at home to play than it is on the road, there’s no doubt about it. And they’re trying really hard at home. You can see it in the statistics. The fly-ball rates went up, the swing-and-miss rates went up at home. I think we were first in the league in runs scored on the road, so I think guys were relaxed on the road. They could just go out and play the game, don’t worry about anything. Then at home, they’re trying to do so much.”

Hudgens said the silver lining to being fired is not having to listen to SNY’s broadcast booth constantly criticize his hitting philosophy.

“I just shake my head at the old-school guys that have it all figured out,” he told reporter Marc Carig (Newsday, May 27). “It just confounds me. It’s just hilarious, really.”


May 26, 5:18 pm: Alderson announced Hudgens had been fired, and replaced by Johnson, after Monday’s loss to the Pirates.

“I think he understood the circumstances,” Alderson explained. “This is in response to a specific situation, and nothing else should be read into it,” he added, when asked if he expects to make further changes to the coaching staff.

He is replaced by Lamar Johnson, who has been the organization’s minor league hitting coordinator.

Johnson, who has worked closely with several of the team’s young hitters, has been with the organization for 11 years, Alderson said.

Hudgens had been in his fourth season as hitting coach. He also worked for Alderson when with the Oakland A’s, serving as a minor-league manager, hitting instructor and talent evaluator.




992 comments
Ross Markowitz
Ross Markowitz

Nobody knows the fundies as well as Keith Hernandez!

semperfi
semperfi

Hudgens should not question a former MVP in Keith who for his size an over achiever and got the most out of his ability and has a baseball IQ that is off the charts as does Ron Darling who just happens to be and Ivy leaguer to boot. Ike did terrible under Hudgens but did great in his short stint in AAA last year and has done better so far with the Pirates. The Mets team hitting as been below average over the last 4 years under Hudgens and it was a move that was probably long over due.

Bob Higgins
Bob Higgins

You know this guy had to go when he tells Mike that Duda going to be a star !

Gregg Skalka
Gregg Skalka

now get some good hitters to coach other than Wright!

greekgod
greekgod

Keith is  the only one hitting the nail on the head in the booth and is probably the one to get  canned at  end of season for telling the truth.

mcmurphy88
mcmurphy88

I find it laughable that Hudgens even mentions the guys in the booth, most likely referring to Hernandez. Hernandez was a better hitter than anyone on this team, by far, and probably better than anyone Hudgens has ever coached. He should be in the HOF, for his defense at the very least. In any case, good riddance Hudgens, while you may not be the problem,  you certainly weren't the solution.

Kenneth Meltsner
Kenneth Meltsner

And then there were TWO. You gotta figure Terry is next when the team is 20 games under by the All Star break. The sad thing is that, with better bullpen management (and talent) this team, even as it stands now, could be over .500. And competitive. My other question is why does nobody (other than people on this site) seem to hold Sandy accountable for this mess? I love Gary, Ron, Keith and most of the guys at SNY but there has to be some pointed criticism of management.  Yes, SNY sings their paychecks but this is not the YES Network.

drella
drella

I love how dave had the nerve to talk about Keith. The only thing at this points thats keeping me watching the Mets at this point is Gary, Keith, and Ron. I would love to give them a chance to run this team, its scary that every single person other then the wilpons , sandy, and terry realize what the problems are...  

mingo
mingo

Ike Davis said something when asked what was different about playing in Pittsburgh.

He said "Its nice to go to the water cooler at 9am and not have to talk about your hitting stance".

This clearly implies that Hudgens and/or Collins was overmanaging and putting extra pressure on these guys.

There's a reason the team won in the 1990s. Davey Johnson let his guys play.

stage52
stage52

The one common denominator in all this on the field in game mediocrity is caused mostly by the poor decision making of Terry Collins. He is responsible for how the team plays the "Fundies" as Keith likes to say.  A Team is not at the bottom of all the lists of stats that help define a team as good and bad for no reason .  Terry keeps saying that he wants his team to play the game the right way yet all the stats show  that this team  is not being coached well looking at all the stats that matter.

Yes players are responsible too but how do new good players quickly fall into less than  average players on this team time and time again under Collin's leadership ?  I See teams playing better with half the payroll and teams with more than 2 times the payroll barely better than the Mets so payroll is not always a good indicator.  I must say it is hard watching this team and seeing Collin's make bone headed decisions day after day and this team losing. I have been for letting Collin's go now for a long time. (Years). 

This team needs a change in Philosophy and it starts with the manager and runs through the coaching staff when it comes to game play and game decisions.  I hope Tim Teufel does not get caught up in this because I think he really knows how to manage a ball club and did great work for the Mets Minor league teams.  I think both Wally Backman and Tim would have this team playing much better than it is presently.  I  do not think Bobby V will ever get a chance to manage the Mets again .

bugsy
bugsy

Hudgens is right about one thing:

That old school guy DID have it all figured out.

Hernandez hit around .300 lifetime,

And came through with runners on base enough to win one mvp and deserve at keast one other.

stage52
stage52

Hitting Philosophy?  How about see the ball, hit the ball and stop trying to guess the pitch before it is thrown.  I love the advice Yogi Berra gave to the Mazzilli kid who is in the Mets minor league. " If you see  a good pitch .......hit it". Pretty simple philosophy that has worked for over 100 years now.  Why do they make this so hard.  Nobody has the same swing to start with so why try to put them in an artificial box to control them. Let them do their thing.  If it is not working then try to correct the problem on an individual basis.

Vinny Wolf
Vinny Wolf

He had to go. This Team is a strikeout ready to happen!

Jayson Love
Jayson Love

Yeah hes right when I am looking for someone who knows something about hitting I definitely think dave hudgens over keith Hernandez

mingo
mingo

Bill Veeck once had his fans manage a game by giving them placards to hold up which the manager followed.

There is a lesson to be learned here.

Richard Alicea
Richard Alicea

Even though we are critical of the team's management and the lack of talent, I believe everyone on this blog are true Met fans and wish only the best for this team, however, it does not mean that we should remain neutral and avoid expressing our disappointment with team management...just want to set the record straight as I've been a fan since I was 7 years old and I'm 59 now.  I still remember sitting in the bleachers with my dad watching a game during the 1969 season, that was my most memorable game is it was my first.  Social media has given the fan the opportunity to express their disappointment and concerns openly for others to view and I'm all for that, because we all have one goal, and its not the 90 win goal, but rather being a fan of a winner.

donw
donw

Dear Dave,

I'm writing to say I'm sorry I helped get you fired.  If Mets fans had only known how nervous we made your hitters feel, I'm sure most of us wouldn't have bought the tickets we did.  It will be odd to see all the runs we are going to score when the seats are completely empty, but if that's what it takes, so be it.  We'll take one for the team.  I'm just sorry we didn't do this before you left so the hitters could have performed better at Citifield and you could have kept your job.

theglider
theglider

Look at out lineup

Lagares - a below average hitter in May

Murphy - slumping

Wright - hitting

Granderson - hitting

Young - disaster

Duda - see Young

Flores - nothing

Catcher - nothing

This offense is horrible. And no amount of coaching will make good players out of bad ones.

tigerinblu
tigerinblu

Mark my words... if we get swept in Philly this weekend.... Collins is gone

markd
markd

The sad part is that that the Wilpons along with Doubleday rescued this teams from the ashes and shortly brought respectability and a world series banner. What happened to cause this to change?

cliffy44
cliffy44

This was so long overdue.  I've been wishing for Hudgins and Valverde to be fired, since 0 forever.

NOW, they need to fire Terry Collins and Reubin Tajada.

And, if it's not asking too much, can the Mets also rid themselves of the ever pathetic Keith Hernandez???

Make Hernandez the hitting coach; as that is his strength; and no one really cares about who his favorite Hooters waitress is. Or what he drinks at Happy Hour at the Mets motel.

Keith is horrendous as an announcer. 0 BUT  .  .  .


He is wonderful, when compared to the entire announcing staff of the Philadelphia Philthies. 0 Now, they are the true personification of eternally pathetic.

theglider
theglider

Two guys have hit in May, Wright and Granderson. Is it any wonder we can't score?

We need hitters. Real hitters.

BringBackDaveTelghe
BringBackDaveTelghe

@DarrolRayFanClub Yeah....it's the same thing as any coach in general.  You have x players...are they doing better then expected, or worse then expected?

Doing worse doesn't mean it's the coach...but change it for the heck of something else clicking.

If you're doing better...why change something if it's not broken?

anymos
anymos

@mingo No, he was referring to fans.  Burkhardt told the rest of the story behind it.  He was in a coffee shop one morning with Josh Satin when a fan said hello and then proceeded to critique his approach.

qualcomm
qualcomm

@stage52 Because it was hard for him, he assumes it's hard for everyone.

Melvin Hernandez
Melvin Hernandez

@barbarossa He played in 6-7 games in the Majors...he should have been going to Keith for advice on how to coach.

markd
markd

@barbarossa Hudgens remarks shake my head. Quite frankly, while his position is overrated as from what I read, Johnson appears to has had a history of being good at kick starting offenses, only to later see them sputter along with his employment.

markd
markd

@tigerinblu Collins gets paid $1M-$1.5M. The Mets: A) are too cheap to eat the remainder of his salary despite being low and B) would not want to pay top dollar for a marquee manager for a cellar dweller roster/team.

greekgod
greekgod

@tigerinblu I doubt Collins will be fired until after the season is over. The thing is who to bring in IF he is fired this weekend. Sandy has no clue who to hire in place of Collins.

90wins
90wins

@tigerinblu If Collins is gone, Sandy is probably going too. Double firing will become the norm. 

qualcomm
qualcomm

@markd Did Fred to that?  I know it comes across that way, but the owner was Nelson Doubleday. 

greekgod
greekgod

@cliffy44 I like Keith he is wonderful to tell small stories about his life and after life......hahah 

I have a problem with Ron Darling who consistently tells us how every pitcher or batter has some type of how his arm or leg or lower part of his body in or is not in sync with the rest of his parts. 

DON'T BE SLOPPY
DON'T BE SLOPPY

@cliffy44 If it wasn't for Gary, KEITH & Ron I wouldn't even watch this poor excuse for a professional baseball team.  Those 3 along with Kevin are some of the best in the business.


Sorry you feel the way you do about Keith but I think you might be in the minority with those feelings.

Melvin Hernandez
Melvin Hernandez

@stage52 @bugsy A MVP award, multiple All Star games appearances....2 World Series rings and almost 20 years of playing time. Hudgens played 6-7 games in the majors. That guy has some nerve.

markd
markd

@barbarossa @theglider Sure he did, he is not dumb. He is the former Exec VP of Operations for all of baseball. I tell you what, take his spot and then see if you can get some fillet mignon worth of players with hamburger money. The CY move though is amazing, $7M for a .200 hitter. CY's agent deserves to be the PA of the year.

mingo
mingo

@90wins @tigerinblu Doubt it.

Firing Collins will be a start. To fire and bring in a new GM isn't going to happen in the middle of the season. That essentially would say, we are giving up right now on the entire system and we wish to go a new direction.

The truth is, there is no better direction out there with its hands open waiting for a job. Sandy has taken this team in the best direction he could considering he has a subpar manager or at best a .500 manager, a lack of budget and a weak system to start with.

qualcomm
qualcomm

@Dream Snatcher That's a given.  they go, I go. The broadcasters are the most compelling reason to turn the TV on. 

artie412
artie412

@Dream Snatcher @cliffy44 Agreed. Those guys are WHY I am still watching. And I think that Keith -- frankly -- is a bit too "comfy" to spend his time as hitting coach, except as a "go to" guy like right now for a short period.

72tilltc
72tilltc

@barbarossa  Sandy has the longest GM losing streak in the history of baseball. Without steroids turning average players like Bob Whelch and Dave stewart into Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale we wouldnt even know his name.

qualcomm
qualcomm

@markd  Wow, you think we might have hamburger money someday?  Never know... it's possible.   For now, off we go to the trash again for dinner.