After rumors and conversations over the last two weeks, the Cardinals have hired Matt Holliday as their new bench coach.
The St. Louis Cardinals finalized their 2023 coaching staff on Sunday, with the big news being that former All-Star outfielder Matt Holliday was hired as the team’s bench coach. Among the rest of the teams new hires include Dusty Blake as their new pitching coach and the Turner Ward as their new hitting coach.
Holliday was rumored to have interest in the Cardinals bench coach role, even openly showing interest during an interview on Hot Take Central. Holliday’s only coaching experience comes from being an assistant hitting coach with the Oklahoma State baseball team since 2019. During his time with the Cardinals from 2009-2016, Holliday slashed .293/.380/.494 with 156 HR and 616 RBI and was inducted into the Cardinals Hall of Fame this year.
Turner Ward has been the Cardinals assistant hitting coach since 2021, and has been a hitting coach with three other Major League clubs since 2015. There was noise for the last few years that former hitting coach Jeff Albert was to blame for the team’s offensive woes, and so the club will be hoping that Ward’s promotion and Holliday’s presence will help with those issues.
Some may have heard of Ward before, but Dusty Blake will be a new name for many. Blake was the club’s Major League pitching strategist last season, meaning that he worked with the club’s coaches, pitchers, and video team to help their pitchers improve and game plan against other offenses.
The World Series just ended on Saturday, and now that the Cardinals have their coaching staff filled out and front office all locked into new contracts, it is time for their full attention to turn toward making moves to improve the club for 2023.