Just in case some of you didn't read the Player's Guide, here is the excerpt from the guide an my interpretation.
Building a strong coaching staff is essential in HBD. The coaching staff plays a significant role in player development.
At the big league level, you'll need a bench coach, hitting coach, pitching coach, bullpen coach, 1B & 3B coach. The 1B & 3B coaches contribute to the development of players' basestealing and baserunning. The hitting coach, with a little help from the 1B & 3B coach, contributes to the development of all hitting ratings. The pitching coach, with some help from the bullpen coach, contributes to the development of pitcher ratings. The bench coach takes over as manager after any managerial ejection.
At the minor league levels, only hitting, pitching and bench coaches are needed. The bench coach plays a role in all rating developments. The hitting coach focuses on hitting and baserunning ratings and the pitching coach impacts pitching ratings.
A franchise must also hire a fielding instructor that roves the system. He impacts a player's fielding ratings.
Coaches improve with age. And their demands for role, level and money also increase with age.
My take on this is probably rather funny but until I am told otherwise this is my take on it. I used to think you needed the best available to get the most from the players, but is that really why?
At the ML level you pay the most money for coaches, not exactly sure why other than it is the way things work, here and in the real world. In the real world it is a different story of what the coaches do. But if their Player's Guide says it plays a significant role in player development and nothing else, then why pay a fortune for coaches at the ML level?
The Bench Coach is only used if you get thrown out of a game, if that is his only purpose then why spend over the minimum to get one? How many times have you been thrown out of a game? Two of us tried one season, setting the argumentative to Very Aggressive, I got thrown out 17 times and he got thrown out 36. His team wasn't that good to begin with and probably the reason he was thrown out so much. But is that the only reason for a Bench Coach?
When I first read it I couldn't figure out the correlation between the hitting coach and base coaches until I suddenly realized that baserunning and basestealing is a hitting stat.
Coaches play no in-game roles as they have said, I disagree with that because base coaches can or should at least.
The Fielding Instructor is the one that everyone should focus on at the ML level in my books, because he has a direct effect on your minor league players.
I only have two players on my roster this year that could actually benefit from good coaches so I didn't spend a lot on coaches at the ML level and didn't start a bidding war for any either. My FI returned for another season and I was happy about that and that is my biggest concern anymore. I did raid the minor league coaching ranks for the ML level though. Why should I spend $2M+ on a coach when I can get one at league minimum with the same abilities? I thought about waiting to the end to get ML coaches and take the bidding war drop outs and focus only on the minor league coaches. But then I spotted coaches that were just as good for the minimum. I only needed five coaches to fill out the minor league coaching rosters and the majority came from the Rookie pool. I have had to fight to keep some of them even and I didn't bid on more than one coach at any position either.
I have actually enjoyed the coach hiring phase the last two seasons on all my teams, mainly because I have figured out how to get out of the frustrating dog-eat-dog hiring race.
IMO, it would be better served to actually do away with the coach hiring phase. Instead take the money allotted to coaching and training and split it up into the different aspects of player development at each level and call it coaching distribution. This would also add more controllable strategy to the game. Then the arbitration phase could be extended a day or two so trades could be executed. Also some new things could be inserted into the schedule that others would like to see added.