Long with the Mets in 2017
|Outfielder / Hitting coach|
|Born: December 30, 1966|
Van Nuys, California
|Career highlights and awards|
Kevin Richard Long (born December 30, 1966) is an American former minor league baseball player and the current hitting coach for the Washington Nationals of Major League Baseball (MLB). He formerly held the same post with the New York Yankees for eight seasons (2007-14).
Long graduated from Thunderbird High School in Phoenix, Arizona.
Long was a second-team All-American in 1989 at the University of Arizona and was also named first-team Pac-10 that year. A three-year letter-winner, Long still holds the Arizona record for most extra-base hits in a game (five) and ranks in the top-10 in several different statistical categories (second, extra-base hits; sixth, doubles; seventh, multi-hit games; eighth, total bases; ninth, runs scored).
Long was selected by the Kansas City Royals in the 31st round of the 1989 Major League Baseball Draft. He played in the Royals system for eight seasons, from 1989 until 1996. Long led Class-A Eugene in 1989 in games played, at bats, runs scored, hits, doubles, and RBIs. He also ranked eighth among all Northwest League hitters with his .312 batting average in his rookie season. He missed most of the 1994 season after undergoing surgery on his left wrist.
At the end of spring training in 1997, Long, who was assigned to the Triple-A Omaha Royals, decided to retire, asking instead for a coaching job. Long made his professional managing debut with the Class-A Wilmington Blue Rocks in 1997. He was named the Northwest League's co-Manager of the Year after leading the Spokane Indians to the league title in 1999.
Long served as the hitting coach in the Royals organization with the Double-A Wichita Wranglers (2000-01) and Triple-A Omaha Royals (2002-03). He became the hitting coach for the Yankees' Triple-A team, the Columbus Clippers, from 2004 to 2006.
Long was promoted to hitting coach for the New York Yankees in 2007. Long guided a Yankees offense that ranked first in MLB in runs (968), hits (1,656), home runs (201), RBIs (929), team batting average (.290), slugging percentage (.463), on-base percentage (.366) and total bases (2,649). The 968 runs were the most in franchise history since 1937 (979). His offense also featured the American League MVP Alex Rodriguez, three Silver Sluggers (Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada and Rodriguez) and four of the American League's top-15 batting averages.
After a down year offensively in 2008, Long's Yankee hitters again led the league in offense during the 2009 season, in which they also won the franchise's 27th World Series title, and led the American League in runs again.
He was then hired by the New York Mets to be their hitting coach.
Long most recently has been hired as of November 2nd 2017 by the Washington Nationals to be their hitting coach.
When Long was still a player (though he does not remember which year), he suffered an accident during an offseason job with a drywall company, when a 25-pound sledgehammer hit him in the left eye, shattering three bones.
During the offseason, Long works part-time for organizations such as MVP Sports Camps.