A's Announce 2009 MiLB Coaches

The Oakland A's announced their 2009 coaching staff assignments on Tuesday. Most of the affiliates will have significantly different staffs in 2009, with the exception of the Triple-A Sacramento River Cats.

The Sacramento River Cats will be the only Oakland A's US affiliate to return with the same coaching staff next season, as manager Todd Steverson, pitching coach Rick Rodriguez and hitting coach Brian McArn will try to make it three titles in a row in Sacramento.

In Midland, the Rockhounds will be managed by Darren Bush, who has spent the past two seasons as the skipper of the Stockton Ports. Bush will be joined by hitting coach Webster Garrison and pitching coach Scott Emerson. Garrison was the Rockhounds' manager in 2008 and Emerson was the pitching coach. Bush won a Cal League title with Stockton in 2008 and was the hitting coach for the Ports for two years before taking over as manager.

In Stockton, the Ports will be led by manager Aaron Nieckula, who was the Kane County manager in 2007 and 2008. The former minor league catcher had a .514 winning percentage in Kane County. He will be joined by pitching coach Don Schulze, who had served as the pitching coach in Kane County for the past two seasons. Hitting coach Tim Garland will return to Stockton to round-out the staff.

In Kane County, the Cougars will be welcoming Steve Scarsone into the organization as the manager. Scarsone was a long-time major league utility player in the 1990s. He has managed twice before, in South Bend in 2001 and in Lancaster in 2002 as part of the Arizona Diamondbacks organization. Scarsone will be joined by pitching coach Jimmy Escalante, who was the pitching coach in short-season Vancouver last season. Haas Pratt, a recent Cougars' player, will serve as the team's hitting coach.

Rick Magnante will stay on as the manager of the Vancouver Canadians. Former big league lefty Craig Lefferts will serve as his pitching coach. He was with the A's Rookie League club last season. Casey Myers, who was a player-coach for Midland last season, will be the Canadians' hitting coach season.

The A's Rookie League club will be managed by Marcus Jensen, a former big league and US Olympic team catcher. He will be joined by former A's first round pick Ariel Prieto, who will serve as the team's pitching coach, and hitting coach Juan Dilone, who had previously served as the A's position coordinator in the Dominican.

2008 Stockton pitching coach Garvin Alston has taken a position as the team's minor league rehab pitching coordinator and he will travel to all of the A's affiliates. In addition, former minor league manager and A's third base coach Tony DeFrancesco will remain with the organization next season as a roving minor league instructor.

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