Much of the big league coaching staff was announced on Tuesday, but missing from that announcement was an assistant pitching coach. Eric Jagers had that job in 2022 but he left the organization to take a job with the New York Mets. On Thursday evening the team announced that they had found his replacement, naming Alon Leichman as the assistant pitching coach.
It’s been an interesting journey in baseball for Leichman, who was born in Israel – where they don’t play much baseball. He pitched at Cypress College for three seasons before transferring to UC San Diego for his final two years of eligibility as a 26 and 27-year-old in 2015 and 2016. He continued to pitch for Team Israel in limited action as he was told he needed a third Tommy John surgery, and last summer pitched for Israel in the Olympics. Leichman has been a coach in the Mariners organization since 2017 and was most recently their Triple-A pitching coach in Tacoma.
In 2021 Alon Leichman was the pitching coach for Double-A Arkansas. New Reds 1st base coach Collin Cowgill was the manager of that team. Pitching prospect Brandon Williamson, who the Reds acquired in the spring from Seattle, was also on that team and he put up his best numbers of his career that season (3.48 ERA in 67.1 innings with 23 walks and 94 strikeouts). Levi Stoudt also pitched, briefly,with Arkansas in 2021. Stoudt was acquired at the trade deadline in the Luis Castillo trade.
The Reds pick up a draft pick in 2023
Major League Baseball announced that the Cincinnati Reds (and seven other teams) will be awarded a Round A Competitive Balance pick in the 2023 draft. Cincinnati will draft 7th of those eight teams. The exact pick number isn’t yet known as it can be effected by teams drafting late in the 1st round and how much they spend on their 2023 payroll. It’s likely that the pick will be the 37th overall, but it could move based on other teams spending beyond the luxury tax.
Next week at the winter meetings the 2023 draft lottery will be held. The first six spots in the draft are up for grabs by all 18 non-playoff teams. The Reds have the 4th best odds for the #1 pick. After the 6th pick the remaining picks between 7-18 are determined by the worst records remaining. Cincinnati could land their first pick somewhere between 1 and 10.