Red Sox To Interview Juan Nieves, Rick Peterson For Pitching Coach

Jared Wickerham

Boston needs a pitching coach, and they've already lined up two potentials for the gig

Boston is in need of yet another pitching coach, their fourth in the three seasons since John Farrell left the post for the Toronto Blue Jays. Farrell is back in town now, but it's as the manager, meaning he needs to, along with the Red Sox front office, pick the man to do the job he became famous in Boston for.

To that end, the Red Sox will interview Chicago White Sox bullpen coach Juan Nieves, as well as the Orioles director of pitching development, Rick Peterson. Nieves has been the bullpen coach since 2008, after spending 1999 through 2007 as a pitching coach in the White Sox system.

Nieves played with the Brewers from 1986 through 1988, ages 21 through 23, before suffering an arm injury that ended his career in the majors, and sent him to the minors once more for 1989 and 1990. He re-appeared in 1998, in indy ball as a 33-year-old, before calling it a career as a pitcher.

Peterson was also a pitcher in the minors, starting in 1976, but becoming a coach after 1979. He was a minor-league coach in the Pirates system before becoming their bullpen coach in the mid-80s. Of course, Peterson is best-known for his work with two other clubs. He was the Athletics' pitching coach during the late-90s and early aughts, when the Moneyball-era Athletics were around. He was also the pitching coach when the Mets traded Scott Kazmir. While that looked bad at first -- especially since Peterson felt Kazmir was an accident waiting to happen -- the years have been kinder to Peterson's assessment than Kazmir's career. Kazmir has washed out of the league, unable to stay healthy or maintain his velocity, and Peterson remains as a viable coach in the majors.

According to Alex Speier, it's expected that the Red Sox will interview one or two others for the pitching coach job as well. Getting Peterson would certainly be a coup over a division rival, and Boston's pitchers would likely benefit from the two-headed pitching brain trust that is Farrell and Peterson. But that doesn't mean the job will be his.

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