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D-backs fill out coaching vacancies

D-backs fill out coaching vacancies

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PHOENIX -- By promoting Kirk Gibson from bench coach to interim manager late Thursday, the D-backs created a hole on the new skipper's staff.

Arizona filled it Friday night, leaving the official announcement until Saturday afternoon prior its game against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Third-base coach Bo Porter replaces Gibson on the bench, and Joel Youngblood assumes Porter's old post.

Porter, 37, interviewed for the Marlins' managerial vacancy last week. He was Florida's third-base coach from 2007-09 prior to coming West.

"You look within your organization first; you kind of like to promote from within," Gibson said. "I thought Bo is a guy who would really be a great assistant to me, very qualified, very familiar with our system and how we evaluate things."

Youngblood, 58, is in his fourth season in the organization, most recently serving as the D-backs' Minor League outfield and baserunning coordinator. Youngblood, who also held Major League coaching positions with the Cincinatti Reds and Milwaukee Brewers, played for five teams over 14 MLB seasons.

"My number one concern right now is don't mess the signs up," joked Youngblood, who worked with Gibson and much of the Major League staff and players during Spring Training. "It's just a matter of getting my feet back on the ground and getting settled and confident, like everybody else in this sport."

D-backs left fielder Cole Gillespie said working with Youngblood in the Minor Leagues improved his footwork and throwing motion in the outfield.

"I think the first time I met him, he was already trying to correct my throwing technique," Gillespie said. "He's very hands-on and has a lot of ideas out there.

"He'll be there. If he sees something, he'll be there to correct it."

Fellow outfielder Gerardo Parra, whom Gillespie splits playing time with, said Youngblood's coaching at Double-A Mobile was instrumental to his growth as a defender, too.

While he has worked as an outfield instructor, Youngblood said his main focus with the big league squad will be baserunning.

As part of Friday's musical chairs -- Gibson replaced A.J. Hinch and Jerry Dipoto was promoted in the wake of general manager Josh Byrnes' dismissal -- bullpen coach Glenn Sherlock filled in as bench coach during the D-backs' 12-5 victory over the Dodgers.

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