Tigers hitting coach Wally Joyner won't be back in 2017

Chris McCosky
The Detroit News

Detroit — The Tigers will be hiring a hitting coach this offseason.

Wally Joyner, who has served in that capacity since 2014, has informed the club that he is interested in pursuing other opportunities in the game.

That leaves assistant hitting coach David Newhan’s status in limbo, as well. Whether or not he is brought back would be the decision of the new hitting coach.

The rest of manager Brad Ausmus’ staff will be retained for 2017.

Gene Lamont (bench coach), Rich Dubee (pitching coach), Mike Billmeyer (bullpen coach), Dave Clark (third base coach, outfielders), Omar Vizquel (first base coach, infielders, base running) and Matt Martin (defensive coordinator) will all be back.

In his three seasons as hitting coach, the Tigers had the highest team batting average in the American League twice and finished second this past season. In terms of team OPS, the Tigers finished first, third and second in his three seasons.

This past year, the Tigers scored 61 more runs than they did in 2015 and just seven fewer (750) than in 2014 when they led the league in scoring.

Lloyd McClendon, who served as the manager at Triple-A Toledo this past season, along with long-time Mud Hens hitting coach Leon Durham, would be two in-house candidates to replace Joyner.

McClendon was the Tigers’ hitting coach on Jim Leyland’s staff.

Twitter @cmccosky