Chicago Cubs to name former prospect Ryan Flaherty their new bench coach

The Chicago Cubs are expected to name their former first-round draft pick from 2008 as manager Craig Counsell's new bench coach.

Colorado Rockies v San Diego Padres
Colorado Rockies v San Diego Padres / Matt Thomas/San Diego Padres/GettyImages

The Chicago Cubs have reportedly tapped Ryan Flaherty as Craig Counsell's new bench coach.

Flaherty was a first-round selection (41st overall) by the Cubs in the 2008 draft. Flaherty played four seasons in the Cubs' organization and he even climbed his way to 8th best prospect in the system. However, he was snagged by the Baltimore Orioles in the Rule 5 Draft in 2011, and he played the next six seasons with the O's.

As a journeyman utility player, Flaherty played for the Philadelphia Phillies, Atlanta Braves, and Cleveland Guardians before ending his playing career in 2019. The San Diego Padres hired Flaherty as a scouting and development coach in November of 2019. In 2022, Flaherty filled in as the team's acting manager when Bob Melvin was placed on COVID-19 protocols. In 2023, Flaherty was promoted to Melvin's bench coach.

The 37-year-old Flaherty will be replacing former Padres manager Andy Green, who took a job in the New York Mets' front office earlier this month. Flaherty's fast rise as a coaching candidate already looked good under Bob Melvin's tutelage, but now he gets to return to a vastly different Cubs system from the one he departed from over a decade ago and help one of the best managers in baseball get the team ready for a playoff run.

It's a seemingly good hire that should bring some fresh perspective to the Cubs' dugout from a talented and championship-hungry Padres organization. There are still holes to fill in the coaching staff with the departure of assistant hitting coach Johnnie Washington and the dismissal of bullpen coach Chris Young and strategy coach Craig Driver. Pitching coach Tommy Hottovy and hitting coach Dustin Kelly are expected to retain their roles in Counsell's new brain trust.

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