Mark McGwire Steps Down As San Diego Padres Bench Coach

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LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 03: Bench Coach Mark McGwire of the San Diego Padres looks on during the fifth inning of an Opening Day game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on April 3, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 03: Bench Coach Mark McGwire of the San Diego Padres looks on during the fifth inning of an Opening Day game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on April 3, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /
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The San Diego Padres will now look to fill three coaching vacancies within the organization.

Per AJ Cassavell of MLB.com, San Diego Padres bench coach Mark McGwire informed the organization that he will not be returning to his position for the 2019 season.

The Padres will now look to fill three coaching positions, including bench coach, infield coach, and hitting coach as the team prepares to enter the offseason. Per multiple reports, it is expected that the organization will fill all three positions fairly quickly and will look to promote from within the system instead of hiring from outside.

As previously mentioned, leading candidates for the vacant hitting coach position appear to be assistant hitting Johnny Washington and El Paso Chihuahuas hitting coach Morgan Burkhart. A number of Padres hitters experienced positive turnarounds after spending some time in El Paso, leading many to thank the work of Burkhart. His familiarity with the majority of the major league roster makes it seems as if he will be a perfect fit for the position, should the Padres stick to internal candidates.

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Cassavell and others have already pointed out that one name to watch as a potential bench coach replacement is El Paso Chihuahuas manager, Rod Barajas.

Barajas would be a very good fit for this position. He has experience managing nearly every player on the current San Diego Padres roster and speaks Spanish, something  McGwire and Stairs could not provide to players. This could provide a new ease for many players on the Padres roster.

As of Tuesday afternoon, there was no indication of McGwire taking another role with a different franchise. Since retiring from Major League Baseball after the 2001 season, McGwire coached for nine years as a major league hitting coach (three with San Diego, three with Los Angeles, and three with St. Louis).

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