Brett steps away from Royals’ interim hitting coach job

KANSAS CITY, Mo. —  George Brett said from the moment he took the job as hitting coach on May 30 that he would do it only on an interim basis.
 
True to his word, Brett stepped down from the position Thursday after nearly 60 days on the job. Brett will return to his previous position as Royals vice president of baseball operations.
 
Pedro Grifol, who had been working with Brett in coaching the hitters, now will assume the position of hitting coach.

“My lifelong passion after playing was not to be a hitting coach,” Brett said in a statement. “But Dayton asked me if I would consider it, and I did, but only on the promise that it would be on an interim basis.

“There is a ton of talent here, and doing this for almost two months has prepared me to be a better adviser to Dayton and his staff. This has been an unbelievable experience for me, and now I’m energized to contribute more to this organization as I return to my non-uniformed role.”

Under Brett, the Royals continued to languish near the bottom of the league in runs scored — they are presently 13th.
 
But Brett’s guidance has seemed to snap first baseman Eric Hosmer out of a season-and-a-half funk. Hosmer is second on the team in average and is first in home runs with 11.
 
Mike Moustakas also has raised his average from .184 to .225 under Brett.

“George did an incredible job,” Royals general manager Dayton Moore said. “His expertise as a baseball man and his passion to win will have an everlasting effect on our team.  I’m thrilled that he will be more involved in all aspects of baseball operations.”
 
You can follow Jeffrey Flanagan on Twitter at @jflanagankc or email him at jeffreyflanagan6@gmail.com.