“If you are pitching well, it doesn’t matter what park you are pitching in, as long as you are throwing the ball the way you can.”
Larry Rothschild, New York Yankees Pitching Coach
Larry Rothschild pitched for 11 seasons in the Reds, Tigers, Padres, White Sox and Cubs Minor League Systems. He got two “cups of coffee” in the Major Leagues with the Detroit Tigers in September of 1981 and September of 1982. Larry Rothschild has left his mark at the Major League level in his post- playing days. He was the Cincinnati Reds bullpen coach in 1990 and ’91 and the Reds pitching coach in 1992 and part of 1993.
Rothschild returned to the Major Leagues in 1995 as the Florida Marlins pitching coach. He stayed in that position until becoming the Tampa Bay Devil Rays first ever manager prior to the 1998 season. Rothschild managed for three-plus years before returning to his hometown of Chicago to become the Cubs pitching coach. He spent nine seasons with the Cubs before becoming the New York Yankees pitching coach prior to the 2011 season.
In the 1960’s, pitching coaches started to become looked upon as a very important part of a baseball’s team’s success. There is no doubt in my mind and in the minds of people who know him, that Larry Rothschild ranks right there among the best. Keep in mind that managers and coaches are judged by results. That is not entirely fair at all times because in the end there is only so much that a manager or coach can do.
Hitting coaches are important, too….although I have posed this question to many baseball managers,” If you can have a choice of a good pitching coach or a good hitting coach, which one would you choose?”
ALL of them said that a good pitching coach is more important. Even though some hitting coaches have done some wonderful things, hitting is more of an innate skill. I have known Larry Rothschild since 1977 when he pitched for the Indianapolis Indians. After a few conversations with him, I knew that when his playing days were over, he would become a terrific pitching coach.
Larry Rothschild combines great knowledge with great people skills. Several of his pitchers over the years have told me how much they enjoyed working with him. They pointed out that he worked with them as individuals as opposed to speaking in general terms. When a broadcaster is around managers and coaches on a daily basis, he gets a “feel” for who really “knows his stuff.”
Larry Rothschild was the Cubs pitching coach under four different managers.That should give you an indication of how well respected he is among baseball people. Rothschild stayed with the Cubs for nine years. He could have stayed longer. How many coaches spend nine years with a team and survive several managerial changes? Very few….
Several years ago, Larry told me that it is much for difficult for a young pitcher to break into the American League because of the designated hitter.. The pitcher doesn’t get a ‘breather” the way he does in the National League when the opposing pitcher comes to bat.
Larry Rothschild is back in the American League with the Yankees and he did a magnificent job with their pitching staff last year.