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Barry Bonds’ return to baseball was short-lived. The Miami Marlins have reportedly parted ways with the San Francisco Giants legend after just one season as the team’s hitting coach, according to Jon Heyman.
In his only season as the team’s hitting coach, Bonds managed to improve the Marlins’ offense, but not by much. The club did post a .263 batting average, which ranked fourth in the league, but most of the other offensive numbers were middle of the pack. Miami ranked 13th with a .322 on-base percentage and 27th with a .394 slugging percentage. All told, the Marlins offense improved from 19th in 2015 to just 17th in 2016 according to fWAR.
It’s worth noting that Bonds managed to improve the club’s offense despite the fact that Giancarlo Stanton got hurt and Dee Gordon was lost for much of the season due to a PED suspension. Early in the season, Bonds received a ton of credit for his work with outfielder Marcell Ozuna. Ozuna turned in a solid year, posting a .266/.321/.452 slash line. He tied a career-high with 23 home runs.
When Bonds was hired, there were questions about whether he would enjoy the rigors of coaching. While the team has yet to issue a reason Bonds was let go, that may have played a role in his firing.
According to Craig Mish of SiriusXM, Bonds didn’t take too kindly to being called out by manager Don Mattingly during a summer road trip.
On top of that, Bonds may have alienated Giancarlo Stanton, the Marlins’ best hitter.
While his hiring received a ton of media attention, Bonds mostly stayed out of the limelight as the club’s hitting coach.
Now that Bonds is unemployed, it’s unclear what comes next for the former legend. As long as the Marlins don’t trash him on his way out, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see another team show interest in bringing him in as a hitting coach.
With that said, it’s unclear whether Bonds would be interested in continuing his career. It was a shock when Bonds returned to the game as a coach, it might be just as surprising when he leaves after just one season in that role.
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