Say “so long” to the all-too-familiar sight of a weary Charles Nagy trudging to the mound to counsel yet another scuffling Angels pitcher.
Nagy was shown the door Tuesday, after three seasons as the Angels’ long-suffering bullpen coach. His exit may herald the first of what may become a wholesale purge of former manager Mike Scioscia’s coaching staff.
It’s expected that the Angels will name the entire new coaching staff in one fell swoop some time in the next few weeks.
Nagy, 51, will be replaced by Doug White on new skipper Brad Ausmus’ staff in Anaheim. White has just completed his first season on the Houston Astros’ staff as bullpen coach.
Of all of Scioscia’s former coaches, Nagy was one whose job seemed to be fairly secure. He had a positive track record despite working with always depleted resources.
The news was broken this morning by Houston beat writer Jake Kaplan and senior writer Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.
The Angels’ pitching staff was ravaged by injuries during each of Nagy’s three seasons in Anaheim — a big reason all three were losing seasons.
Nagy was always juggling an ever-changing staff. In 2018 alone, 14 Angels pitchers went on the disabled list.
White, a San Diego resident, had spent six seasons in the Astros’ organization, with 2017 his first year as a coach at the MLB level. He steps into a deluxe job in Anaheim.
White was brought aboard by Houston in 2013 as the pitching coach for the Tri-City ValleyCats (short-season Class A).
The next two seasons, White served as a roving pitching instructor across the Astros’ system. In 2016, he was promoted to minor league pitching coordinator.
Prior to his coaching stint with the Astros, White had been a minor-league pitching coach in the St. Louis Cardinals organization for five years.
White has been the owner and operator of Passion for Pitching in San Diego since 2004, providing private pitching instruction for clients. He’s a 2002 broadcast journalism graduate of Arizona State University.
Nagy joined the Angels in November, 2015, replacing Mike Butcher.
He became a popular figure in Anaheim his first season, 2016, when it appeared Nagy that could work magic. That season, Nagy nursed the Angels’ battered pitchers to an unlikely American League record: The Angels had 24 different pitchers record a win. He used 30.
Nagy had been pitching coach for the Arizona Diamondbacks from 2011-13, where he oversaw the development of lefty ace Patrick Corbin — a possible off-season target for the Angels.
It was clear that Nagy knew a lot about pitching. As an MLB pitcher himself, Nagy never had the swing-and-miss stuff of a guy like Corbin. But he didn’t need it.
Over 14 years in the majors, the right-hander had plenty of endurance and craft on the mound.
That guile made Nagy a three-time All-Star for the powerhouse Cleveland Indians teams of the 1990s. He pitched in two World Series, in 1995 and 1997, both losing causes.
From 1995-99, Nagy was an absolute ironman for the Tribe. He had 15 or more wins in each of those seasons.
Nagy was a cog for dominant Indians teams that won tons of games — but underacheived when it counted. The World Series wasn’t kind to Charlie Nagy.
The Indians lost in six games to the Atlanta Braves in the 1995 Series.
Nagy’s next appearance in the Fall Classic was worse, in 1997.
In a thrilling Game 7, with the Indians facing the Florida Marlins, Nagy took the ball in relief for the bottom of the 11th. He gave up a two-out, bases-loaded walkoff single.
Clutch? Maybe not. But nobody questioned Nagy’s endurance. He made 192 consecutive starts without missing a turn for the Indians.
When Nagy finally went on the disabled list in May 2000 to remove bone chips from his elbow, the run of starts ended — a streak that Nagy began way back in October, 1993.
Tell that to the kid pitchers of today.