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Mark McGwire Steps Down

The Padres bench coach will depart after 3 years in the dugout.

San Diego Padres v Chicago White Sox Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images

News confirmed today via A.J. Casanova Cassavell and other outlets that bench coach and former MLB star Mark McGwire will leave the team in order to spend more time with his family. McGwire made his decision earlier in the month (possibly around the same time Matt Stairs and Josh Johnson were told they were out) but the news was not announced until today.

The 16-year MLB veteran McGwire actually spent 9 years after his playing career as a coach: first as a personal coach to players such as Matt Holliday (ugh) and now-Padres 1st base coach Skip Schumaker before formally becoming a hitting coach with his former Cardinals club. McGwire moved from the Cardinals to the hitting coach position with the Dodgers in order to be closer to his family in Irvine, possibly setting precedent for today’s announcement. Mark became the bench coach for the Padres in 2015.

Rod Barajas could be the Padres bench coach next season.
Associated Press

Rumors are already abound regarding who may fill the vacancy. The SDUT reports that McGwire had spoken to Andy Green regarding his decision to step away in September, which might explain the appearance of Rod Barajas on the Padres bench in the last month of the season. The El Paso Chihuahuas manager has been long-rumored as the eventual replacement for Andy Green by Padres Twitter experts and may have been auditioning for the bench coach role while with the big league club.

Mark hasn’t stated whether he will or won’t pursue future coaching positions though one can imagine a managerial vacancy may tempt McGwire to return to the MLB in the future.