As first reported by Buster Olney and confirmed by Jordan Bastian, the Cubs are expected to name former utilityman Willie Harris as their new third base coach. The job opened when Will Venable left to join Alex Cora in Boston as the Red Sox bench coach. No word yet on whether the Cubs wanted someone with a similar name in order to synthesize the continuity they won’t otherwise have on the roster.
Harris spent part of 12 MLB seasons with seven different organizations and actually had his longest stay with the White Sox from 2002-05. He logged the most total plate appearances with the Nationals and also played for the Orioles, Red Sox, Braves, Mets, and Reds. Though he and David Ross played for three of the same organizations, they never wore the same uniform at the same time.
That will change this year as Harris dons a Cubs jersey after spending two seasons as the Reds’ baserunning and outfield coordinator. Prior to that, he served as the manager of the Richmond Flying Squirrels in the Giants organization for the 2018 season. He was also once caught stealing on a throw from Geovany Soto to Blake DeWitt.
The Cubs box score that day was a real doozy that may have featured the grindiest group of grinders who ever ground. Seriously, these dudes put baristas to shame. David DeJesus, Reed Johnson, Tony Campana, Bryan LaHair, Jeff Baker, Darwin Barney, DeWitt, and Joe Mather all played. The Cubs also employed Ian Stewart and Steve Clevenger. Good Lord.