Jed Lowrie reveals secret to doubles, favorite A’s teammates

It wouldn’t surprise me to see Jed Lowrie to be the A’s hitting coach one day.

When he announced his retirement from baseball on Thursday, I couldn’t help but notice that Lowrie’s farewell message on Instagram featured a green background and two photos of him in A’s gear.

Lowrie spent seven of his 14 seasons in Oakland in three separate stints from 2013-14, 2016-18 and 2021-22. When he came back for his final tour in 2021, he said the A’s always felt like home. Lowrie played in 50 games last season before getting DFA’d in August, ending his MLB career.

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His time as a player is up, but Lowrie also sounds open to the idea of staying in baseball in some capacity.

“Love never dies though,” Lowrie wrote in his farewell message, “so I look forward to new opportunities in the game.

A hitting coach with the Oakland organization – whether in the minors or majors – seems like a natural fit, though staffs are likely set for 2023. Throughout his big-league career he was always known as a “Professional hitter.” Especially the doubles. In 2017 he hit a career-high 49 two-baggers, and even in 2021 as a 37-year-old he ranked second on the A’s with 28 doubles.

Lowrie recently joined Chris Townsend on A’s Cast (7:00 mark above) for a chat about his retirement and how much he valued his time in Oakland. So, what’s the secret to hitting doubles? 

“You’re not strong enough to hit homers consistently or not fast enough to hit triples,” Lowrie said, followed by a few seconds of dead air.

Just as Townsend prepared another question, Lowrie let out a big laugh.

“That was my attempt at deadpan,” Lowrie said. “You were supposed to laugh at that.”

Retirement Jed in full effect!

“I think there is a little bit of a seriousness in that,” Lowrie said. “I had some power, but the Coliseum isn’t always the friendliest for fly balls. I certainly wasn’t sticking in around the game because of my speed. I hit a lot of line drives, I hit a lot of backspin line drives in the gaps and in the corners and I had a nose for second. I was always looking for a double.”

Lowrie carried a business-like approach in the clubhouse, especially when he became the OG of the bunch during his last two stints. He was in Oakland to see the arrivals of top prospects like Matt Olson, Matt Chapman and Chad Pinder, along with the development of Marcus Semien. Asked to pick his favorite group of A’s teammates, Lowrie said he loved being a mentor to those young stars.

“Each individual group is gonna be different,” Lowrie said. “Individual guys like Brandon Moss and Josh Reddick and Coco (Crisp) – those guys are all guys that I really enjoyed. We were all veterans. We kind of had an identity and it was a little smoother. If I had to pick, I would say coming up with the Oly/Chapman/Pinder/Semien, where I probably had more influence and hopefully impact as that veteran player.”

Lowrie couldn’t help but laugh when thinking about Olson, Chapman and Pinder coming up through the ranks. Jed was 32 when Olson and Pinder got promoted in 2016 and 33 when Chapman got called in 2017. It sounds like they were a rambunctious group from the get-go.

“You got these three young guns coming up, thinking pretty highly of themselves, pretty vocal right away – I was a little skeptical at first,” Lowrie said. “But they ended up being some of my favorite teammates of all time.”

Jed also gave a shoutout to Bob Melvin, who was the skipper for all of his seasons in Oakland but 2022.

“I think Bob Melvin did a really good job of allowing players to be themselves but also demanding a lot from them,” Lowrie said. “That’s a hard balance to strike and I think that’s why he’s had so much success in his career as a manager. The freedom to be myself and I had the trust of the organization and of Bob to go about my business, because they knew I was gonna show up and perform every night.”

One thing’s for sure, A’s fans would love to see Lowrie suited up in the green and gold again in a coaching role. And here’s a video of Lowrie hitting a walk-off dinger against Cleveland in 2021, because why not.