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Report: Giants block Mets from interviewing pitching coach

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The Giants knew other organizations would be aggressive in pursuing their staff members after a shocking 107-win season, but they reportedly have kept the New York Mets from trying to swipe one of Gabe Kapler's most important coaches. 

According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, the Giants denied the Mets permission to interview pitching coach Andrew Bailey for their open bench coach spot. Transactions are frozen during the lockout but teams are allowed to make moves with their coaching staffs and the Mets are working on building a staff under new manager Buck Showalter. 

Bailey would have been a logical fit for the Mets, who hired Billy Eppler as their general manager earlier this offseason. Eppler was the GM of the Los Angeles Angels when Bailey got his start as a coach in 2018. He is about to begin his third season as Kapler's pitching coach and is coming off a season in which the Giants ranked second in the Majors in ERA. 

Keeping Bailey and the rest of the coaching staff around took on extra importance after the Giants lost hitting coach Donnie Ecker to the Texas Rangers, who made him their bench coach and offensive coordinator. Teams generally allow coaches to pursue jobs that are considered a promotion, but according to Rosenthal, this request came too late in the offseason. Coaching hires are traditionally made in November and December, although this offseason certainly has operated on a different timetable because of the lockout.

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Like Ecker, Bailey is viewed as a potential future manager. The Giants have already lost his original assistant -- Ethan Katz -- to the head pitching coach job with the Chicago White Sox. They replaced Katz with J.P. Martinez last season and also have Brian Bannister on staff to work with pitchers. 

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