Rangers unveil promotions, set Minor League staff
Buechele to manage Triple-A Round Rock; Wood takes over at Double-A Frisco
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have promoted two successful Minor League managers, as the team announced that Steve Buechele will be manager at Triple-A Round Rock this season and Jason Wood has been promoted to Double-A Frisco.
Buechele replaces Bobby Jones, who has been promoted to the Major League staff as assistant hitting coach. Buechele, who spent 11 seasons in the Major Leagues as a third baseman, has been a Minor League manager for five seasons and led his team to the playoffs in four of those years. He spent the past four seasons at Frisco after one season at Class A Bakersfield. He has an overall record of 376-323.
Buechele's staff will include Justin Mashore, who is being promoted from Class A Hickory as the hitting coach. He joins the rest of the staff returning from last year: pitching coach Brad Holman, infield coach Spike Owen, athletic trainer Jason Roberts and strength coach Rick Mabie.
Wood, a former League infielder with the Athletics, Tigers and Marlins, was the Carolina League Manager of the Year after leading Class A Myrtle Beach to a 77-62 record. He has a 223-184 record over the past three seasons. Wood will be joined by hitting coach Jason Hart and pitching coach Jeff Andrews, who were both on Buechele's staff last season. Trainer Carlos Olivas and strength coach Eric McMahon also return.
Holman and Andrews will be honored as the 2013 winners of the Bobby Jones Developmental Man of the Year Award as the Rangers Mid-Winter Awards Dinner on Jan. 24 in Grapevine.
Wood will be replaced at Myrtle Beach by Joe Mikulik, who was a roving outfield instructor last season. Prior to that, Mikulik spent 13 years as manager at Class A Asheville in the Rockies' organization. Pitching coach Steve Mintz, hitting coach Josue Perez and strength coach Anthony Miller also return, while Jacob Newburn joins the staff as trainer after being promoted from Hickory.
Corey Ragsdale returns to manage Class A Hickory after leading the Crawdads to the best overall record in the South Atlantic League. He has a new staff of pitching coach Oscar Marin, hitting coach Bobby Rose and trainer Sean Fields. Wade LaMont returns as strength coach.
Tim Hulett returns for his eighth season as manager of Class A Spokane, and pitching coach Jose Jaimes has been promoted as the Indians pitching coach. Zach Jones will serve as trainer and Ed Yong will be the strength coach.
The Arizona Rookie League Rangers will be managed by Kenny Holmberg for the second straight season. His expanded staff includes pitching coaches Brian Shouse and Joey Seaver. Holmberg will have three other coaches in Donzell McDonald, Kenny Hook and Albert Puello as well as trainer Dustin Vissering and strength coach Josiah Igono.
The Rangers' team in the Dominican Republic will be managed by Aaron Levin. His seven-man coaching staff will include pitching coaches Henderson Lugo and Pablo Blanco and hitting coach Guillermo Mercedes. The other coaches are Humberto Miranda, Alexis Infante, Chu Ovalle and Osvaldo Oliva. The trainer is Alex Rodriguez and the strength coach is Eduardo Thomas.
Jayce Tingler continues to oversee the Rangers' Minor League instruction as field coordinator. Scott Coolbaugh will be the hitting coordinator and Danny Clark will be the pitching coordinator. Brook Jacoby returns to the organization as assistant hitting coordinator. Casey Candaele will oversee infield and baserunning instruction while Hector Ortiz returns as catching coordinator and will be assisted by Ryley Westman, who led the Rangers to the Dominican League championship last year.
The Rangers also have three special assignment instructors: Mark Connor (pitching), Harry Spilman (hitting) and Brian Dayett. Trainer Napoleon Pichardo and pitching coordinator Keith Comstock will continue to oversee the rehabilitation program in Surprise, Ariz. Jeff Bodenhamer comes over as the trainer after three seasons at Myrtle Beach.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.