The Mets have fired hitting coach Chili Davis and assistant hitting coach Tom Slater, and the team has named Hugh Quattlebaum its new hitting coach and Kevin Howard its new assistant hitting coach. The news broke late last night after the Mets dropped their series opener against the Cardinals.
While the Mets’ bats have woken up a bit over the past few days, the team still ranks 29th in baseball with just 3.30 runs scored per game through its first 23 games. Given the track records of the hitters in the everyday lineup, it’s not surprising the Mets have chosen to go in a different direction.
Here’s some background on the new coaching duo from the Mets’ press release:
Quattlebaum, 42, joined the Mets organization this offseason as the minor league director of hitting development. He had spent the previous three seasons with Seattle. Quattlebaum was the Mariners’ minor league hitting coordinator in 2018–2019 and was the assistant hitting coach with the Major League team during 2020. Prior to working with the Mariners, he was coaching and consulting in Southern California. Quattlebaum was drafted by Detroit in the 25th round of the 2000 First-Year Player Draft from Amherst College (MA). He spent four years in the Tigers (2000–2002) and Orioles (2003) minor league systems.
Howard, 39, joined the Mets this year as the organization’s director of player development. He spent the previous six seasons in Cleveland’s organization, including 2019–2020 as the minor league hitting coordinator. Howard played professionally for 12 seasons, playing in the Reds, Yankees, Phillies, Dodgers, Mariners, Padres, Blue Jays and Cardinals organizations before spending the final two years of his playing career in Independent ball. He was originally drafted in the fifth round of the 2003 First-Year Player Draft by Cincinnati. Howard earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Management from the University of Miami, where played collegiately for three seasons, winning a National Championship in 2001.