Red Sox eyeing hitting coaches

INDIAN WELLS, Calif. -- The Boston Red Sox had been considering former New York Yankees first baseman Tino Martinez for the vacant position of hitting coach, according to an industry source, but the Miami Marlins hired Martinez as their hitting coach Thursday.

The source indicated that the Sox had had preliminary talks with the 16-year big league veteran. Red Sox manager John Farrell said Wednesday that he would begin interviewing possible candidates this weekend in hopes of naming a hitting coach by the end of next week.

The Marlins and the Red Sox were the only teams the Yankees gave permission to talk to Martinez, according to a league source.

Farrell also said, and Red Sox general Ben Cherington later agreed, that the club is seriously considering a two-man staff for the position.

"I think it depends on who the first guy is, and if the right complement is there, it's something we'd consider," Cherington said. "There are pros and cons to both approaches. Depending who the people are, we see some benefit to two people. It's a big job and trying to give appropriate attention to all 13 position players on the team, so it is something we're considering.

"Both ways can work. There are some guys, and (former Red Sox hitting coach Dave Magadan) was one of them that could do a good job on their own, but it's a big job, so that's why we're considering this approach. We'll see where it goes."

Martinez was a career .271 hitter with 339 home runs and 1,271 RBIs with the Mariners, Yankees, Cardinals and Rays. He won four World Series titles with the Yankees. He has served as a special assistant for the Yankees and more recently as an analyst for the YES Network.