Should Cubs Go After Dave Duncan?

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Should Cubs Go After Dave Duncan?

Chicago Cubs

Some folks believe Rudy Jaramillo is the best hitting coach in baseball, and he’s now a member of the Chicago Cubs’ coaching staff.

Should they now go after the best pitching coach in baseball?

Now that the Cubs have signed the supposed best hitting coach in baseball in Rudy Jarmillo (sic.), maybe they can start thinking really big and go after a coach who can make an even bigger difference: Cardinals pitching guru Dave Duncan.

With all due respect to Rudy Jarmillo (sic.), Dave Duncan is the best pitching coach in baseball history. He should be the first pitching coach in the Hall of Fame. He has a record of developing young pitchers, resurrecting old pitchers, squeezing one golden season out of the most mediocre of arms and turning your trash into his treasure that is unmatched anywhere in baseball. Nobody’s even close.

I can give you 35 reasons why the Cubs should do whatever they can to sign Dave Duncan: the 35 or so pitchers who have had their best season in the big leagues pitching for him — from the Mariners’ Ed Vande Berg (9-4, 2.37 ERA in 1982) to the White Sox’ Richard Dotson (22-7, 3.22 in 1983) to the Athletics’ Storm Davis (16-7, 3.70 ERA in 1988) and Dave Stewart (22-11, 2.56 ERA in 1991) to the Cardinals’ Kent Bottenfield (18-7, 3.97 ERA in 1999), Woody Williams (18-9, 3.87 ERA in 2001) and Kyle Lohse (15-6, 3.78 ERA in 2008). CHICAGO SUN-TIMES.

There is no doubt that Dave Duncan is the best pitching coach in baseball – in fact, he’s the only coach that makes more than Rudy Jaramillo ($850K versus Jaramillo’s $800K). His future is uncertain, as he has said he’ll wait to see what Tony LaRussa does.

But that said, this is a total non-starter for now. The Chicago Cubs are very happy with pitching coach Larry Rothschild. Since Rothschild arrived as the Cubs’ pitching coach in 2002, the Chicago Cubs have consistently had above average pitching, including many years of dominance.

Of course, if Lou Piniella retires after 2010, as is expected, is it conceivable that the new manager will want to bring in a new pitching coach – though Rothschild survived the transition from Dusty Baker to Lou Piniella. Maybe at that point a discussion of Dave Duncan could begin, but for now … nah.

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Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.