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El Paso’s Zinter finds his spot in bigs as hitting coach

The El Paso Chihuahuas affiliation with the San Diego Padres just got a lot more interesting.

New Padres Manager Andy Green has hired 47-year-old, former Hanks High star, Alan Zinter as his hitting coach.

“When it settled in, I was like, ‘Cool man, it’s the Padres, El Paso’s Triple-A, a lot of these guys are going to be going back and forth,'” Zinter told ABC-7.

The 1986 Hanks High grad, who spent more than a decade in the minor leagues as a player and had only 84 major league at-bats, has finally found his place in The Show as a hitting coach.

“Obviously, it didn’t go the way i wanted to as a player,” Zinter said. “But I still take great pride in trying to learn from the best, from the people that do it the best, and I want to share that with the kids.”

Zinter’s father, Alan, Sr., also spoke with ABC-7.

“He had the heart and that’s why he got where he is today,” said Alan, Sr., who still lives in East El Paso, where his home office wall is adourned with pictures from his son’s many stops in baseball. “He called and said, ‘Andy’s got the job with the Padres and he wants me as the hitting coach.’ I said, ‘Right on schedule.'”

It’s not the first time the Padres have shown interest in Zinter.

“Alan got drafted in 1986, the year he graduated from Hanks, by the San Diego Padres. They came and wanted to sign him but we said, ‘No he’s going to the University of Arizona. Lo and behold who is it now? He’s back with the Padres, the team that drafted him back in 1986. So that’s a complete circle … 29 years and back to the Padres.”

Zinter Jr., added: “I would not change anything that I’ve gone through, just because it’s prepared me for what I do now. And so I want to be a great hitting coach. I want to be able to help players. It’s not for me, but I want to part of something great.”

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