A few hours after I posted these thoughts on the division of labor on the new Twins coaching staff, the team announced the hiring of Butch Davis to be the first base coach, completing the crew.
He has the three characteristics I proposed for the job: He's a former outfielder, he's black, and while his major league record doesn't show it, he had a pair of 40-steal seasons in a long minor league career, so he knows something about that aspect of the game.
Davis is a true outside hire. He's been toiling in the Orioles farm system for 20 years, was never a member of the Twins organization, was never a teammate of Paul Molitor's.
Davis had a odd career. His minor league record says he was a player. He began his big-league career with a bang -- he hit .344 in a 33-game callup with Kansas City in 1983 -- and then fizzled. In 1984, almost the same number of at bats, he hit .147. It was almost a decade before he got another 100 major league at-bats, and by then he was 35.
Davis hit .299 in more than 3,500 Triple A at-bats, but just .243 in 453 major league at-bats. The difference between the levels isn't that great. He had a shot in '84 to take a job and run with it, and his shoelaces were tied together at the starting line. He never really got a shot after that.
Aaron Hicks has gotten more opportunity with less reason than Davis.