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Dodgers: Rick Honeycutt Discusses Mark Prior, New Role, and NLDS Game 5

Honey will continue to be an integral part of the Dodgers organization.

LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 22: Pitching coach Rick Honeycutt #40 of the Los Angeles Dodgers looks on against the San Diego Padres in the first inning of a Major League Baseball game at Dodger Stadium on Saturday, September 22, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Keith Birmingham/Digital First Media/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images)

Rick Honeycutt was the longest tenured pitching coach in Major League Baseball, but that is no longer. The Dodgers will be moving in a new direction with bullpen coach Mark Prior transitioning to pitching coach and Honeycutt moving into the front office as a special advisor.

Honeycutt truly saw it all in his time with the Dodgers as a pitching coach from Grady Little and Joe Torre to Don Mattingly and now Dave Roberts.

Honeycutt on Sad Ending to Career

The Dodgers did not send Rick Honeycutt with a well-deserved ring, sadly. When asked whether or not this was the most painful loss he had experienced, he said:

“Yeah.”

Honeycutt to Kershaw During Game 5

Clayton Kershaw was a major reason why the Dodgers lost Game 5 of the NLDS this season and in Rick Honeycutt’s final act, he consoled Kershaw. Here is what Honey described the situation as and what he told Kershaw after he was pulled:

“I remember playing with [Dennis] Eckersley, he was so good, and you can still come back and do it, but you give up the home run [to Kirk Gibson in the 1988 World Series] and you’re the last line of defense and don’t do your job — it’s painful. You’re used to succeeding and you feel like you’ve let the other guys down.

I told [Kershaw], ‘There’s nothing I can say right now, but I want you to know I care about you and we all hurt. You’ve always given everything you got and when you do that, you shouldn’t let this eat at you. You got us here.’ Told him I love him and care about him.”

It is truly a shame to see the experience and wisdom of Honeycutt vanish from the clubhouse.

Friedman on Honeycutt

President of baseball operations Andrew Friedman knew how vital of a role Rick Honeycutt played in the Dodgers’ successes and as everyone will, he will dearly miss him as a pitching coach. However, he now has him as a front office asset:

“Obviously he’s meant a lot to this organization for a long time, and he still will going forward. It’ll just be in a slightly different role that we’re still kind of working out the details on.”

All good things must come to an end, I suppose.

Honeycutt on Mark Prior

With Mark Prior taking over the vacancy, here is what Honeycutt had to say about him:

“Mark’s extremely smart, always observing, very conscientious, very prepared. He’s a good communicator with the pitchers. He always wanted to be at every bullpen session, always listening. The continuity I hope will be very streamlined going forward.”

A10/10 rating from Honeycutt, with his expertise and daily contact with Prior, is a good thing to hear for the future.

Written by Daniel Preciado

My name is Daniel Preciado and I am 18 years old. I am a sophomore Sport Analytics major and Cognitive Science and Economics dual minor at Syracuse University. When I am not in New York, I live in Whittier, California --- not too far from Chavez Ravine. I am pretty old-school for being an analytics guy and I will always embrace debate. Also, Chase Utley did absolutely nothing wrong.

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