Gabe Kapler already has a history of managing Brandon Belt.
Well, sort of.
NBC Sports' Ahmed Fareed reminded us of a moment between Belt and the newly named Giants manager last year, when Kapler was with the Phillies.
That's right: On a 3-1 count with no one on base, Belt squared to bunt. That's caused Kapler to look up from the dugout, smile and shout, "Swing!"
More expletives were involved, but you get the idea.
The Giants' first baseman, who only has one sacrifice bunt in 4,221 career plate appearances, must have heard Kapler's demand because he then took a hack for a single to right field.
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It's nice to know the communication already is open between them.
These aren't the Giants of the past. These aren't even the Giants of just a few years ago. It's a new age of baseball in San Francisco, and it starts with the coaching staff.
Sources told NBC Sports Bay Area's Alex Pavlovic on Sunday that the Giants are working to bring in former Dodgers minor league hitting coach Justin Viele, 29, as one of their major league hitting coaches. This comes days after 33-year-old Donnie Ecker was named San Francisco's hitting coach.
When it comes to pitching, the Giants have gone non-traditional and turned their eyes to the college game. D1Baseball.com's Kendall Rogers reported Sunday that Arizona State's Jason Kelly is a "serious candidate" to become the Giants' next pitching coach.
Kelly was named ASU's pitching coach this past June. Prior to that, he spent seven season at the University of Washington and was revered as a top coach and recruiter for the Huskies. D1Baseball.com named Kelly the 2018 National Coach of the Year for Washington's run to the College World Series.
Under Kelly's tutelage, 15 pitchers at Washington were drafted since 2013, including seven in the top 15 rounds. He isn't the only college pitching coach the Giants have targeted, too.
The front office also went after the University of Georgia's Sean Kenny, and Eastern Carolina's Jason Dietrich. Both declined and decided to stay put in college. Rogers says the Giants have gone after four or five candidates thus far.
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The Giants haven't formally announced that Curt Young will not return for a third season as their pitching coach, but it was expected that manager Gabe Kapler would bring in several new coaches. The only known coach to come back next season is Ron Wotus, who will be in his 33rd year with the Giants organization.
SAN FRANCISCO -- For more than a decade, the staff in the Giants' dugout was as traditional as it gets, with longtime big league coaches serving under Bruce Bochy, who managed for 25 consecutive seasons. It appears the next staff will be the complete opposite.
The Giants have gone young and are working to bring in former Dodgers minor league hitting coach Justin Viele as one of their major league hitting coaches, multiple sources told NBC Sports Bay Area. Viele, 29, is expected to work with 33-year-old Donnie Ecker. While it's unclear what the hierarchy would be, the Giants have internally discussed the possibility of getting rid of traditional roles, and it's possible Ecker and Viele will work as a team instead of having one hitting coach and one assistant hitting coach.
Viele served as hitting coach for the Low-A Great Lakes Loons in 2019 and the year before that was the hitting coach for the High-A Rancho Cucamonga Quakes, where he worked with top prospect Gavin Lux. Viele is from Southern California but has Bay Area ties, having played at Santa Clara University. He later worked on his alma mater's coaching staff before joining the Dodgers, where he worked with Farhan Zaidi and Gabe Kapler.
Like Ecker, who is coming over from the Reds, Viele has limited professional playing experience. He was drafted as a middle infielder and played 126 minor league games for the Orioles, a stint that made him a teammate of current Giants standout Mike Yastrzemski.
[RELATED: What to watch for at Winter Meetings]
It appears Viele will now serve as one of Yastrzemski's hitting coaches, continuing a trend for the Giants, who are trying to bring in younger coaches well-versed in analytics, biomechanics and player development. The Giants are expected to announce their staff early this week at the annual Winter Meetings, with Viele possibly joining Ecker and Brian Bannister, the 38-year-old Director of Pitching. Ron Wotus is the lone member of Bochy's staff who will work on Gabe Kapler's staff.