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Monday, March 5, 2012

Dan Warthen took hard-headed ways to long career as majors coach, after making bigs as player

1990 Dan Warthen Calgary Cannons card, Warthen seen in close up head shot

That promise was made by Dan Warthen's manager at Calgary in 1988, where Warthen served as pitching coach, The Moscow-Pullman Daily News wrote.

Bill Plummer promised that if Plummer ever became a major league manager, it was Warthen who would be his pitching coach, The Daily News wrote.

"We're both pretty hard-headed about the way we want things done," Warthen told The Daily News.

Warthen has since gone on to take advantage of that promise with a long career as a major league coach, serving as pitching coach for three other major league franchises, most recently serving with the Mets.

He's had his long coaching career after a playing career that saw Warthen play four seasons in the majors with the Expos, Phillies and Astros.

Warthen's coaching career began by the mid 1980s, serving as pitching coach at single-A Spartanburg in 1986, after a stint at Bend. By 1988, Warthen was at Calgery, serving as pitching coach under Plummer.

Warthen stayed with Calgary through 1990. In August 1989, he told one of his pitchers the pitcher was going to the majors, even after a bad outing. "That's okay," Warthen told the player Clint Zavaras, Zavaras recalled to The Associated Press, "you'll have games like that. Hopefully, it won't happen when you pitch Monday in the big leagues."

Warthen went back to the big leagues himself in 1991, as Mariners bullpen coach. He then made the Mariners as pitching coach for 1992.

By 1994, Warthen was with the Padres system, at AAA Las Vegas. By 1996, he was back in the majors as Padres pitching coach. In May 1997, Warthen had to shuffle his rotation, by shifting starters to the bullpen.

"I'm forced into this situation," Warthen told The AP after that 1997 staff shuffle. "I'm tired of watching the bullpen give up runs."

By 1999, Warthen was pitching coach for the Tigers, named to the post after a mid-season firing. Warthen took the job after serving as pitching coach at AAA Toledo.

Warthen served with the Tigers through 2002. By 2006, he was bullpen coach for the Dodgers. By 2008, he was pitching coach for the Mets, a job he still holds for 2012.

In February 2012, Warthen worked with Johan Santana, trying to engineer a Santana return to form and seeing positive signs.

"I've been looking at video from when he's been down here recently and comparing it to video from 2008, before he got hurt," Warthen told The New York Post. "It's no different. Not even one percent. That’s extremely important."

For a feature on Dan Warthen's playing days go to Dan Warthen, That Advice
1990 Dan Warthen Calgary Cannons card, Warthen seen in close up head shot
1990 CMC Tally
Cards Featured:
704/880 - 80.0%
Players/Coaches Featured:
Made the Majors:
480 - 67%-X
Never Made the Majors:

5+ Seasons in the Majors:
10+ Seasons in the Minors:

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