The Orioles are making two changes to their coaching staff to alter the club’s major league pitching instruction.
Baltimore has shifted Chris Holt away from being the major league pitching coach, and he will focus full time on his role as director of pitching, a source confirmed to The Baltimore Banner. Holt already held the title of director of pitching, but the source noted this move will allow Holt to oversee the development of pitchers throughout the organization, an area he previously excelled in.
Before becoming the Orioles’ pitching coach in 2021, Holt served as the minor league pitching coordinator for Baltimore after general manager and Executive Vice President Mike Elias hired Holt away from the Houston Astros organization for the 2019 season.
The source also said Darren Holmes, the assistant pitching coach, will not return to the organization in 2024. Holmes began as the Orioles’ bullpen coach in 2019, a position he also held with the Colorado Rockies beginning in 2015.
The rest of manager Brandon Hyde’s staff will remain in place: co-hitting coaches Ryan Fuller and Matt Borgschulte; major league field coordinator and catching instructor Tim Cossins; bench coach Fredi González; first base coach Anthony Sanders; third base coach Tony Mansolino; offensive strategy coach Cody Asche; pitching strategy coach Ryan Klimek; and coach José Hernández.
Baltimore’s pitchers improved this season under the leadership of Holt and Holmes. The Orioles’ team ERA of 3.91 ranked seventh in the majors, and their relief ERA of 3.55 was fifth best. Several pitchers, including right-handers Kyle Bradish, Grayson Rodriguez and Yennier Canó, took massive steps forward.
Bradish, in particular, established himself as a possible No. 1 starter after pitching to a 2.83 ERA. The performances of the staff as a whole in the postseason wavered, but a three-game sample doesn’t take away from the overarching success.
A candidate for an internal promotion could be Triple-A pitching coach and upper minors pitching coordinator Justin Ramsey, who has worked with many of the arms in Baltimore. He helped Rodriguez, especially, establish himself as a dominant pitcher during the second half of the season.
The baseball Winter Meetings, held this year in Nashville, Tennessee, in early December, are also a space where front office executives can test the water for coaching candidates.