And just like that the Cubs have a new hitting coach in Anthony Iapoce. It was a bit of a surprising move to have the deal done so quickly, but Anthony is no stranger to the Cubs’ system.
With Chili Davis, the Cubs were supposed to improve their situational hitting. Instead, scoring zero or one run in a quarter of your games was not conducive to someone keeping a job as a hitting coach. As a result, the Cubs were looking for a new approach—or a more familiar one—for 2019.
Iapoce has a long history as a hitting coach at the minor league level and spent the last three years as the hitting coach for the Texas Rangers. His results in the Rangers’ organization were not great. Then again, the talent level was not quite as good as the Cubs, either.
What Iapoce has going for him is he already has relationships built with many of the Cubs players, most notably Kris Bryant and Willson Contreras. He was essentially the Cubs minor-league roving hitting instructor from 2013 to 2015. Except for Ben Zobrist and Jason Heyward, Anthony should be ready to go day one, if not before.
For him, there’s a fine line between being patient and being aggressive. In this short interview, you hear how he differentiates between the two.
It will be interesting to hear more of his philosophy of hitting at either a press conference or the Cubs Convention.
Regardless, Iapoce’s tenure is likely tied to Joe Maddon’s contract which has one year remaining. No terms have been disclosed yet.
Lead photo of Anthony Iapoce by MLB/YouTube