Quirk leaving for the Cubs
Jamie Quirk, who has spent the last two seasons as Astros bullpen coach, is leaving the team to become bench coach for the Chicago Cubs under new manager Dale Sveum.
“It’s just a great opportunity,” Quirk said. “When Dale Sveum was interviewing, he asked me if I’d be interested if he gets any of the jobs and he got the Cubs. I talked with [Cubs general manager] Theo [Epstein] and passed that test and called [former Astros general manager] Ed [Wade] for permission and all that. I was excited.
“It’s the Cubbies. Who wouldn’t watch that job? They have a very famous tradition in baseball, and it will be nice to be part of turning it around.”
The appeal of the Cubs was one factor, but Quirk is eager for a chance to get back on the bench and stay more involved in the game. Most of the work he did during the season as bullpen coach was done in pre-game meetings, and he worked in the bullpen during games.
“Pretty much, once the game started I was out of it,” Quirk said. “I was looking forward to the opportunity to get back in the dugout and having more one-on-one with the manager and feeling like you’re actually helping rather than sitting back and watching. I’ve done it many years before, and I kind of missed it.” <p>
Astros manager Brad Mills has already put a list together of possible replacements for Quirk.
“I’m very happy for him to get this opportunity,” Mills said.
Quirk, 57, joined the Astros two years ago after working as a professional scout in 2009. Prior to that, he had served as bench coach for the Colorado Rockies for six years (2003-08) under then-manager Clint Hurdle. He began his Major League coaching career in 1994 as bullpen coach for the Royals and later served as bench coach.
Quirk played in the Major Leagues for 18 years, appearing in 984 games, including 525 at catcher. He compiled a .240 career average with 43 home runs and 247 RBIs while playing for eight teams, including 11 years with the Royals. He was on the Royals’ 1985 World Series championship team.