Sunday, January 18, 2015

Kevin Long: Getting fired by Yankees hurt me

Kevin Long was admittedly upset when the Yankees fired him.

The 48-year-old ex-player, now the hitting coach of the Mets, said being axed by the Yankees "sucked" when asked about it earlier this week, though he still took the time to express his appreciation for the team during the discussion. Long, who had held the same position with New York since 2007 before the two parted ways in October, helped the Yankees bat at least .263 each year from 2007-2012, but seemed to watch his popularity diminish this past season when that average dropped to just .245.

"At first I masked [being fired]," Long told The New York Daily News' John Harper. "I said, 'it's part of the game, it happens.' But you know what, yeah, it hurt. I've never been fired before. I've never been cut from a team. I've always been the first one picked."

The Yankees hit .290 under Long in 2007, leading all of baseball in that category. In 2009, they impressed again with a .283 line, so it certainly wasn't all bad when Long was in their dugout. 

Long said he is thankful for the time he got to work with the Yankees, and received a nice goodbye from them.  

"I don't have hard feelings now," he said. "I'm grateful for the years I had with the Yankees. But it was hard accepting that I had been fired, for whatever reasons they want to come up with. I got a lot of heartfelt texts from players I'd worked with, though, and then it was nice having all these teams calling me and saying very complimentary things about my work."

Long was hired by the Mets October 23, just 13 days after his departure from the Yankees. The details of his deal with them have not yet been released, but it reportedly pays less than the one he had with the Pinstripes

Long's contract with the Yankees still has one year and $750,000 left on it, possibly the reason for that occurrence.  

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)