Not in 2008, anyway. Due to an undisclosed family matter he says requires his undivided attention, the heir apparent to possibly take over for Joe Torre as Dodgers manager in 2011 won’t even be on the staff this year. He’ll move into a role as special assignment scout, which will allow him to stay home in Evansville, Ind., most of the time, although he IS expected to be in spring training. Mike Easler, who had been slated to be the hitting coach for Triple-A Las Vegas for the second year in a row, will now be the major-league hitting coach. This sounds like a temporary thing, with Mattingly possibly moving into the big-league hitting coach’s job in 2009, but I haven’t talked to anyone in the organization so far except for Josh Rawitch, who is letting everyone know about the development. More info as the day goes along, hopefully.
By Tony Jackson