New Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said on Thursday's Orioles Hot Stove Show on 105.7 The Fan that he's spent his first formal week on the job "getting to know the organization and see where we are," with much of that focused on the unenviable task of assembling a coaching staff during the holiday season.
"It's really hard to put together a coaching staff at Christmas time, but one thing is you're not competing with anyone else, because nobody else is," Hyde said. "We're late in the game, obviously, this year with the way things happened this year. It's late, but we're going to do the best we can."
Hyde said it's been "a real productive week" even with those tasks, with his primary purpose not only to talk to coaches who could come join the Orioles organization but also those who were on the major league staff who could possibly give some insight.
The process seems to be in the early stages, but Hyde said the Orioles have gotten a lot of work done.
"Right now, we're wide open," Hyde said. "We're really forming a list, a long list of potential coaches and just going through it very, very thoroughly. Talking to people who have interest, really just doing our homework on what's available."
Executive vice president and general manager Mike Elias said he'd defer mostly to Hyde on matters of staff, but that his own contacts from around the game could factor into that as well. The Orioles were cognizant during the managerial process of respecting other team's staffs, but they'll have to be more so as the coaching staff is formed, likely in January — baseball essentially shuts down for Christmas week, and Hyde said on the show that he and his family had a vacation planned to Maui for the holidays.
But Hyde's respect for the Orioles’ former coaches, some of whom are looking for jobs — including base coaches Bobby Dickerson and Wayne Kirby — speaks volumes of the way he'll handle this process.
He said he knows the feeling of wondering where he'll work at this time of year, and said he wanted those coaches to know he respected where they were.
"I've been through some changes before, and I have a lot of sentiments for the guys who are out on hold," Hyde said. "It's a terrible feeling, so I definitely want to reach out to those guys and let them know. I was 100 percent honest. I said I'm not sure what's going on, to be honest with you, but I want you to know I'm thinking about you and we're not dismissing anybody at this time. I just want them to know that I'm here for a phone call. It's not a good feeling."
He said those coaches could add a lot in terms of institutional knowledge for a new staff and organization in 2019.
"We're a small fraternity, honestly,” Hyde said. “We all know people that know people, we're all friends of friends if we're not friends. So they have my utmost respect for the grind they put us through and our families through. … I think it does have a lot of value to have people who are familiar with the current roster, players in the system, players who are coming through the system. That's definitely something we're considering."