A former SF Giants switch-hitting third baseman has found a new home as a coach for 2024. Bill Mueller has joined Skip Schumaker's staff as an assistant hitting coach for the Miami Marlins according to a team announcement.
Former SF Giants switch-hitting third baseman joins Marlins staff as hitting coach
Mueller will be joined by Jason Hart and John Mabry as part of the trio of hitting coaches. Similar to Hart, Mueller is listed as an assistant, whereas Mabry is the primary hitting coach.
Miami is coming off of a surprisingly strong 2023 campaign in which they went 84-78 while finishing in third place in the NL East. They did have a -57 run differential, so their strong overall record was not necessarily supported by run differential.
That said, Marlins hitters posted a .256/.316/.405 line (94 OPS+) last season. Luis Arráez took home the NL batting title with a .354 batting average while Jorge Soler tallied an .853 OPS with 36 home runs in 580 plate appearances. There is a good chance that Soler does not return to Miami this season as he put together some impressive numbers in a contract year last season.
Since retiring after the 2006 season, Mueller has been involved in just about every facet of the front office and coaching staff. This includes stints as a scout and special assistant to the general manager with the Los Angeles Dodgers before he transitioned primarily to coaching.
Over the past decade, the 52-year-old has served as a hitting coach with both the Chicago Cubs and the St. Louis Cardinals. He did briefly serve as a first base coach with the Cardinals as well. His time with St. Louis came to an end when Mike Matheny was relieved of his duties in the middle of the 2018 season.
Of course, Mueller enjoyed a long and successful 11-year career as a player before he became a coach. Perhaps, he is one of the more underrated Giants players over the past three decades. He spent his first five years with San Francisco before being shipped to the Chicago Cubs after the 2000 season.
However, and not many people may remember this, but Mueller was traded back to the Giants in September of 2002. Since he was added to the roster in September, he was ineligible to be on the postseason roster, but he did record 14 plate appearances down the stretch for a team that went to the World Series.
The veteran infielder spent his last few seasons with the Boston Red Sox (2003 - 2005) and the Dodgers (2006). He won a batting title in 2003 with a .326 batting average and helped the Red Sox win their first title in nearly 100 years in 2004.
Mueller hung up his cleats for good after the 2006 season but has remained in baseball since then. He will look to help a Marlins team that is a bit on the younger side.