One year after being covered in praise for leading the Red Sox pitching staff on the way to a World Series title, Dana LeVangie is out as pitching coach.

The Red Sox announced a few coaching changes on Tuesday morning and among them was news that LeVangie, pitching coach in 2018 and 2019, would not return in that role. Advanced scouting manager Steve Langone will also not return to the field staff in 2020, but both he and LeVangie accepted positions as pro scouts with the club.

LeVangie was previously a pro scout in 2005 and worked as an advanced scout from 2006 through 2012.

He was beloved as a bullpen coach under former manager John Farrell, and when Manager Alex Cora came on board before the 2018 season and asked the pitchers for suggestions on a new pitching coach, LeVangie’s name kept coming up.

“Dana is about as good as they get when it comes to the knowledge of pitching,” Chris Sale said at the time. “I know the bullpen guys are pretty upset that we’re taking him, but I think he’s definitely the right guy for the right spot.”

The first Red Sox pitching coach to have never pitched professionally since Mike Roarke in 1994, LeVangie led the staff to a 3.75 ERA, tied for sixth-best in MLB in 2018.
The following year was a different story as Sale, David Price and Nathan Eovaldi struggled to stay healthy after a long October, and a slow spring training build-up plan that Cora defended through the final days of the season didn’t pan out. The Sox finished with a 19th-ranked 4.70 ERA in 2019, including a 4.95 ERA by the starting rotation.


“I go back to our plan, our plan was the right one,” Cora said last week. “I’ve been saying all along, what those guys did in October was very unique, it was very special. We did what we thought they needed going into the season. I hate comparing us to other organizations, but if you look around at some of the guys that had great seasons, they tapered their usage in spring training. That’s the nature of the sport.

“There’s a lot of information that’s more than just pitches and innings or bullpens that we use to make decisions. We thought it was the right plan. We felt very strongly about it. We did the same thing in ’17. We were just short by two or three innings, compared to this year. We’ll do the same thing.”

In another shakeup, Brian Bannister will not return to an on-field role as assistant pitching coach, but will continue as the vice president of pitching development and focus more on the minor leagues.

Bannister, a former big leaguer who survived with a high-80s fastball, is well respected for his work with analytics and was honest about the Sox’ struggles from the first month of the season, when the starters’ velocities were down.

“It’s the reality of today’s game,” Bannister said in April. “You either train for stuff, go out and execute stuff, or it’s very hard to pitch to right now.”

It was also announced that Andy Barkett will not return as assistant hitting coach.

The Sox have yet to fill any vacancies on their staff.

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