Former Yankees Players We Want to Return as Coaches

Colin KennedyFeatured ColumnistJanuary 29, 2013

Former Yankees Players We Want to Return as Coaches

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    Rich tradition and unprecedented success helps make the list of "Former Yankees Players We Want to Return as Coaches" plentiful.

    But like all other compilations, not everyone can make the cut. 

    Not all players were as loved as Bernie Williams.

    Not every career stretches quite as long as Jorge Posada's. 

    And so, not every former Yankee great will be fortunate enough to return to the Bronx as a coach. 

    Names like Billy Martin and Yogi Berra highlight a long list of former players to manage the Yankees. 

    Joe Girardi certainly will not be the last. 

    Maybe one day we will see The Captain, No. 2, Derek Jeter step into that role.

    But here is a list of former Yankees that we might want coaching now—

Bernie Williams

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    Years as a Yankee: 1991-2006

    Notable Achievements: 5x All-Star, 4x World Series Champion, Career postseason RBI leader

    Current Status: Jazz Musician

     

    There's simply no other way to say it: everybody loves Bernie. 

    Well...at least they did. 

    The same guy who held down center field in New York for more than a decade is now seemingly out of the game. But that doesn't mean Yankee fans don't want him back. 

    As arguably one of the greatest postseason performers of all-time, Bernie Williams created quite a name for himself while playing in the Bronx. 

    For 16 seasons the switch hitter epitomized professionalism in pinstripes. However, his lofty aspirations in the music industry have prevented Williams from making a return to New York. 

    With a career average just below .300, the former Yankee certainly knows a thing or two about hitting. If nothing else, Bernie would be an excellent guy to have around the clubhouse.

    Especially in an age where immature athletes are rushed to the highest levels, Williams could undoubtedly help mentor some of the Yankees' young prospects. 

Jorge Posada

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    Years as a Yankee: 1995-2011

    Notable Achievements: 5x All-Star, 4x World Series Champion, 5x Silver Slugger 

    Current Status: Recently retired 

     

    Just one full season removed from retirement, it might be unrealistic to suspect that Jorge Posada will be returning to the game anytime soon. 

    He did crouch behind home plate for much of 17 MLB seasons after all. 

    But one day, don't be surprised if the "Hip-Hip...Jorge!" chants echo throughout Yankee Stadium once more. 

    As one of the 'core four', Posada caught countless pitchers during his time in New York. 

    And though healthy relationships didn't result from each pairing, nobody can argue the fact that the Yankees possessed one of baseball's best all-time hitting catchers. 

    With 275 home runs and more than 1,000 RBI to his name, Posada has the resume for a return. The only question remains: will Jorge have the itch?

Reggie Jackson

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    Years as a Yankee: 1977-1981

    Notable Achievements: 14x All-Star, 5x World Series Champion, 1973 AL MVP, 2x World Series MVP

    Current Status: Special Advisor for the New York Yankees

     

    Who cares what Reggie Jackson may or may not have said about Alex Rodriguez?

    The fact remains that Jackson, like Rodriguez, was one of the greatest power hitters this game has ever seen. 

    With a powerful left-handed swing and a knack for postseason play, Mr. October made quite the name for himself while playing in the Bronx. 

    His three home runs in game six of the 1977 World Series helped make Reggie a legend, but a return to coaching could help make Jackson a true Yankee icon. 

    It isn't farfetched to suggest considering Jackson currently serves as a special advisor for New York.

    And maybe, just maybe, the Hall-of-Famer could show Yankee hitters something about timely hitting. We all know they could use it. 

Dave Winfield

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    Years as a Yankee: 1981-1990

    Notable Achievements: 12x All-Star, 7x Gold Glove Award winner, 6x Silver Slugger, 1992 World Series Champion

    Current Status: Executive Vice President/Senior Advisor for the San Diego Padres & Baseball analyst for ESPN

     

    I'm not so sure the Padres are willing to let him go for cheap, but Dave Winfield would be a valuable addition to the New York Yankees' coaching staff nonetheless. 

    After playing for six different teams during his 22-year career, Winfield can call more than one city "home" at the age of 61. 

    However, only in New York did the 12-time All-Star get to experience his prime. 

    Winfield was elected to the AL All-Star team eight of his 10 seasons as a Yankee, and as one of the best pure hitters the game has ever seen, there is no question he can bring something to the table.

    Or should I say the plate...

    Now, Winfield shares his experience and knowledge with the world as a member of ESPN's Baseball Tonight crew. 

    But if the Yankees were somehow able to pry him away from the television studio, I am confident they wouldn't be let down. 

Paul O'Neil

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    Years as a Yankee: 1993-2001

    Notable Achievements: 5x All-Star, 5x World Series Champion, 1994 AL Batting champion

    Current Status: Color commentator for YES Network

     

    Paul O'Neil's illustrious career with the Yankees made him a hometown favorite in New York during the mid-to-late 90s. 

    Today, he remains much of the same—just now he sits in a press box. 

    The man they call "Paulie" has continued his legacy in pinstripes beyond the playing field by joining a team of color commentators for the YES Network.

    But perhaps he could be more helpful getting back involved with the organization. 

    With five World Series rings and a batting title to his credit, Paul O'Neil was arguably one of the best hitters in baseball for the best team in baseball during the turn of the century. 

    And while his coaching experience is both limited and unproven, chances are, as the only man in history to play on the winning side in three perfect games, O'Neil could bring the Yankees a bit of luck at the very least.

    Try explaining that one to your kids.