|DeFrancesco won three titles with Sacramento. b>|
DeFrancesco is the third coach to be hired by the A's this off-season. Ron Romanick was named the A's bullpen coach for the upcoming season after spending a decade as the A's Minor League Pitching Coordinator. Earlier this week, the A's named Don Wakamatsu the team's bench coach. Wakamatsu had been the third base coach for the Texas Rangers. First base coach Tye Waller, hitting coach Ty Van Burkleo and pitching coach Curt Young were retained from the 2007 staff.
"The entire River Cats organization is thrilled for Tony and his family," Alan Ledford, President, GM and COO of the River Cats, said in a statement released by the River Cats. "His extraordinary record of success with the River Cats speaks for itself."
DeFrancesco was named the 2003 Pacific Coast League Manager of the Year and The Sporting News Minor League Manager of the Year award after guiding the River Cats to a 92-52 regular season mark in 2003. DeFrancesco also managed the A's Arizona Rookie League team (1994), Short-A Southern Oregon (1995-96), Single-A Visalia (1997-98) and Double-A Midland (1999-2002) for the A's. His career minor league managerial record is 935-831.
DeFrancesco never played in the major leagues after being drafted in the ninth round by the Boston Red Sox in 1984. He spent eight seasons as a catcher in the minor leagues with the Boston and Cincinnati organizations. DeFrancesco played three seasons at Seton Hall University before being drafted. No replacement for DeFrancesco in Sacramento has been named yet, although candidates are expected to include current Midland manager Todd Steverson and former Midland and Modesto A's manager Von Hayes.
The Sacramento River Cats' media department contributed to this report.