If the Boston Red Sox want to replicate their strong offensive output next season, they'll need to do so with a new hitting coach.
Hitting coach Tim Hyers has declined the team's offer to return in 2022, The Boston Globe's Alex Speier reported Monday. Hyers plans to "pursue other opportunities," per Speier, either at the college level or with another major league team that can give him a broader role.
Red Sox manager Alex Cora brought Hyers on as Boston's hitting coach after the 2017 season, and the offense thrived under his watch: The Red Sox led Major League Baseball in runs per game (5.31), batting average (.266), slugging (.455) and OPS (.790) from 2018 to 2021, Speier noted.
Hyers played a key role in the team's 2021 success: Newcomers Kiké Hernandez and Hunter Renfroe enjoyed career seasons, while the former went on a historic hot streak in the postseason. Hyers also helped the Red Sox change their offensive approach in the playoffs to combat the shift, and the result was an MLB-record five consecutive games with at least 10 hits.
Boston's bats went silent after Game 3 of the American League Championship Series, though: The team scored just three runs over its final three games against the Houston Astros.
Red Sox assistant hitting coach, Massachusetts native Peter Fatse, had a "strong working relationship" with Hyers and is a potential internal candidate to take the hitting coach job in 2022.
Other than the departures of Hyers and first base coach Tom Goodwin, the Red Sox coaching staff will remain intact next season as the club looks to build on an encouraging season.