|Eddie Guardado was a fan favorite as a Twins reliever|
from 1993-2003 and again in 2008.
But then word leaked Wednesday night that Eddie Guardado will be the bullpen coach. "Everyday Eddie" has been on hand early in spring training the past few years, but hasn't had a fulltime job with any organization.
Bobby Cuellar, the bullpen coach the past two years, told Mike Berardino of the Pioneer Press that he was informed two weeks ago he would not be retained. Frank Viola, "Sweet Music" on the 1987 champs and 1988 Cy Young winner and now a pitching coach in the Mets system, said he was interviewed for the pitching coach job but has been told he's not one of the final two candidates.
Carl Willis, dubbed "The Big Train" as the top setup man on the 1991 champs, apparently is one of the finalists. (The other, according to the star Tribune's LaVelle Neal, is Neil Allen, currently the Triple A pitching coach for the Tampa Bay Rays.) Willis has a fairly lengthy coaching resume, largely on the staffs of Eric Wedge, who managed the Cleveland Indians 2003-2009 and Seattle 2011-13. He's currently working in the Indians system.
So, I counted it up and it's actually 12 All-Star seasons by 8 pitchers under Carl Willis: 6 #Indians, 6 #Mariners. http://t.co/zY1k1RWYHj
— Mike Berardino (@MikeBerardino) November 19, 2014
Willis has also coached three Cy Young seasons (C.C. Sabathia, Cliff Lee, Felix Hernandez).
Which led me to wonder about Rick Anderson. He coached two Cy Youngs (both Johan Santana.) His charges have also had 12 All-Game nods from six pitchers: Joe Nathan four times, Santana three times, Glen Perkins and Guardado twice, Francisco Lirano once. That list is heavy on bullpen guys, which figures. The bullpen was generally a strength of the Gardenhire era.