The Orioles announced the hiring of new hitting coach Scott Coolbaugh on Friday night to complete manager Buck Showalter’s coaching staff for the 2015 season.
The 48-year-old was interviewed by Showalter and vice president of baseball operations Brady Anderson earlier in the day and will leave the Texas Rangers organization where he spent the last eight years. He was most recently the Rangers’ minor league hitting coordinator, but he spent parts of two seasons as their major league hitting coach from 2011 through 2012.
In 2012, the Rangers led the major leagues in runs scored and ranked second in the American League in total bases and batting average.
Showalter is familiar with his new hitting coach dating back to his days with the Arizona Diamondbacks when Coolbaugh served as a player, coach, and manager in their minor-league system. Coolbaugh also worked closely with Chris Davis in Texas and is held in high regard by the Orioles first baseman.
Originally selected by Texas in the third round of the 1987 amateur draft after a standout career at the University of Texas, Coolbaugh played in 167 major league games and was a career .215 hitter over four seasons with Texas, San Diego, and St. Louis. He also spent two years playing in Japan.
He is the older brother of the late Mike Coolbaugh, who died after being struck by a line drive while serving as the first base coach in a minor league game in 2007.
Coolbaugh replaces Jim Presley, who was reassigned by the organization earlier this offseason due to personal reasons.