Mets News: First base coach Tony Tarasco brings extensive experience
Newly hired New York Mets first base coach Tony Tarasco’s extensive experience working with scouting and analytics will be valuable to a squad looking to return to the postseason.
The New York Mets are not only focused on resupplying their minor league affiliates with a new talent pipeline filled with future young stars and struggling big leaguers looking for a pathway back to the big leagues. The team is also revamping their coaching staff, bringing in new coaches who have ties to the organization while bringing an analytical mindset to the club.
According to ESPN.com, the Mets decided to hire Tony Tarasco to serve as the first base coach in 2021. Tarasco is a former professional outfielder who spent the last year of his career with the Mets in 2002.
Once he retired from baseball, Tarasco began his coaching career, landing a job in the Washington Nationals organization. With the Nationals, Tarasco started out as a minor league coordinator before joining the Nationals coaching staff as a first base and outfield coach. After being fired from the Nationals in 2015, Tarasco was then hired by the San Diego Padres. He spent most of his time in Class A as manager of the Lake Elsinore Storm, serving as a first base and outfield coordinator.
Tarasco brings extensive experience with him to Queens, including an eye for analytical scouting. What makes him a valuable addition to the coaching staff is his analytical mindset and prior experience coaching first base.
Teams are turning away from coaches who continue to hold an anachronistic mindset to how baseball games are managed and how talent is scouted. Tarasco, thanks to his five years working in the San Diego Padres farm system, is someone who is very familiar with the new modern way teams evaluate talent.
As the Mets’ first base coach, a position that he is familiar with, Tarasco will help relay signals from the dugout to the baserunners, using analytics to determine the baserunning strategy for the Mets in 2021.
Considering that the Mets ranked 25th in baserunning with a 67% success rate and 23rd in overall stolen bases in 2020, the team could improve this aspect of their offense. When Spring Training starts in Port St. Lucie, and the Mets are provided with salubrious weather, Tarasco will get his first chance to work with the players.
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The hope is that under his direction, the Mets could improve on one of their only offensive weaknesses heading into an integral 2021 season.