NASHVILLE, Tenn. • The Cardinals search for an assistant hitting coach is expected to end soon with a member of the team's extended family ready to join Mike Matheny's staff.
The Cardinals will offer Bengie Molina the role of assistant hitting coach. The move will allow him to join, for the first time in their major-league careers, his younger brother Yadier on the same team. Molina, 38, last played in 2010, ending a career that included two Rawlings Gold Glove Awards.
Matheny and newly appointed hitting coach John Mabry have been conducting a search for a new assistant hitting coach since Mark McGwire moved to the Los Angeles Dodgers as their hitting coach. Mabry was promoted to his role, leaving the job he had last season vacant.
The Cardinals were one of the first teams to hire an assistant hitting coach, and several teams have followed the trend this season.
Any announcement on Molina will come after the Winter Meetings.
The Cardinals have had an extended search for a candidate that included both in-house coaches from the minor-league system and outside options.
Molina played more than 10 years in the majors, spending more of his career with the Giants and Angels. He and brother Jose Molina played together with the Angels, including on the 2002 club that won the World Series. Bengie Molina was a career .274 hitter with a .307 on-base percentage and a .411 slugging percentage. He hit 15 or more home runs in five consecutive seasons as a starting catcher, and his final three seasons as the primary catcher included at least 80 RBIs.