Injury-prone White Sox hire Geoff Head as director of sports performance
When looking at the list of coaches that are going to be on Pedro Grifol's staff next season, Charlie Montoyo is positioned to make the biggest impact.
Grifol takes over a White Sox team that still has realistic playoff expectations, but he's never managed at the major-league level.
Montoyo has, guiding the Blue Jays from 2019 until midway through last season. He was fired by Toronto following a 46-42 start.
Now the Sox's bench coach, Montoyo's experience will be tapped.
"Obviously, Charlie's managed before, he's got a great track record," Grifol said. "He's going to be right there next to me, from page one until the end. This is not a one-man show. This is all of us, together, preparing and then obviously during a game we'll be communicating, but somebody has to make that decision. That's going to be me, but (Montoyo) will be right there with me."
Buried at the bottom of the White Sox's list of coaches released on Tuesday, Geoff Head is joining the staff as senior director of sports performance.
Considering all of the injuries the Sox endured this year and in recent seasons past, Head is a very notable addition.
"It's a completely new position that's going to help coordinate not only what our strength and conditioning coaches do at the big-league level, but throughout our minor-league system," general manager Rick Hahn said. "Make sure our entire chain of strength and conditioning coaches are doing the same thing. Also, Geoff will be involved with everything from nutrition to sleep to sports science, working in the lab, working with our technicians, making sure we have the best information for what our players need and what we can do to keep them on the field."
According to Spotrac, the White Sox had 1,405 total games missed this season due to injury.
Given last year's 99-day lockout and abbreviated spring training, injuries were a big issue for every MLB team this season.
But even when Sox players like Yoan Moncada, Eloy Jimenez, Yasmani Grandal and Luis Robert were able to get on the field, they appeared to be far less than 100% healthy.
Head, 37, has a lot of work to and he arrives with plenty of experience.
Before spending the past three seasons as the Reds' senior director of health and performance, Head worked 12 years with the Giants, the last eight as strength and conditioning coordinator.
"As we talked about at the end of the season, improving our methods and operations from the sports science standpoint was a priority, and we feel fortunate to add Geoff," Hahn said. "He is one part of personnel and infrastructure additions we are making to hopefully put us in a better position from an injury standpoint going forward. That was an important hire for us."