Robert Clifton Henley (born January 30, 1973) is an American professional baseball coach, former Major League catcher and former minor league manager. A longtime member of the Washington Nationals' organization, he was promoted to Major League third-base coach on the staff of new Nationals' manager Matt Williams on November 19, 2013.
Henley with the Nationals in 2018
|Washington Nationals – No. 14|
|Catcher / Coach|
|Born: January 30, 1973|
|July 19, 1998, for the Montreal Expos|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 26, 1998, for the Montreal Expos|
|Runs batted in||18|
|Career highlights and awards|
During his active career (1993–1999; 2002), Henley threw and batted right-handed; he stood 6 feet 2 inches (1.88 m) tall and weighed 190 pounds (86 kg). He graduated from Mobile County High School in Grand Bay, Alabama, and was selected in the 26th round by the Montreal Expos (predecessors to the Nationals) in the 1991 Major League Baseball draft. Fighting persistent injuries, Henley broke into pro baseball in 1993, then progressed through the Montreal farm system, batting over .300 twice.
In 1998, he saw his only Major League service. He spent the early part of the season on the disabled list, and then appeared in 50 minor league games with the Triple-A Ottawa Lynx and the Class A Jupiter Hammerheads before making his MLB debut as a defensive replacement in the eighth inning of a 6–1 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates on July 19 at Olympic Stadium. He walked in his first MLB plate appearance, and, the following day, when he started against the Philadelphia Phillies, he singled off Curt Schilling in his first official at bat.
Henley would appear in 41 games, starting 30 at catcher, for the 1998 Expos, as he and Mike Hubbard backed up regular Chris Widger. He amassed 35 hits and 11 walks in 132 plate appearances, batting .304 and collecting three homers (off Pedro Astacio, Kirt Ojala and Bobby Jones) and eight doubles. On September 25, his penultimate appearance of the season, Henley went 4-for-4 with two doubles and three runs batted in against the St. Louis Cardinals.
But 1998 would be his only Major League season, and his last full season as an active player. Beset by elbow miseries, he played in only two minor league games in 1999 and missed the 2000 and 2001 campaigns completely. Released by the Expos, he got into one minor league game with the Class A Hickory Crawdads, a Pittsburgh Pirates affiliate, in 2002 before retiring from the field.
Henley rejoined the Montreal system in 2003 as manager of the Rookie-Level Gulf Coast League Expos, and remained in the organization after the Expos relocated to Washington, D.C., in 2005, managing at the Rookie and Class A levels through 2009, and serving as the Nationals' field coordinator of minor league instruction from 2010–2013, leading to his promotion to Williams' staff. He was fired with Williams and the rest of the coaching staff after the 2015 season, but was rehired to serve under new manager Dusty Baker. His contract expired after the 2017 season, but Henley was again rehired as third base coach, becoming the only holdover from Baker's coaching staff to join the new staff headed by manager Dave Martinez.
- District on Deck
- "Bob Henley". www.thebaseballcube.com. Archived from the original on 27 January 2016. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
- 1998.07.19 box score from Retrosheet
- 1998.07.20 box score from Retrosheet
- 1998.09.25 box score from Retrosheet
- Ladson, Bill (November 19, 2013). "Nationals tab Henley as next third-base coach". MLB.com. Retrieved March 6, 2014.
- "Washington Nationals fire manager Matt Williams". espn.go.com. Retrieved 19 January 2016.
- Johnson, Chris (November 24, 2015). "Dusty Baker keeps Bob Henley as Nationals' third base coach (with Logan Schafer note)". MASN Sports. Retrieved November 25, 2015.
- Adams, Steve (October 20, 2017). "Dusty Baker Will Not Return As Nationals' Manager In 2018". MLB Trade Rumors. Retrieved October 20, 2017.
- Zuckerman, Mark (November 9, 2017). "Nats add three more to staff, including pitching coach Lilliquist". MASN Sports. Retrieved November 9, 2017.
- Career statistics and player information from MLB, or ESPN, or Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube, or Baseball-Reference (Minors)
| GCL Expos manager
| Savannah Sand Gnats manager
| Potomac Nationals manager
| GCL Nationals manager
| Washington Nationals third base coach